(Photo Credit: CAAT)
According to a 31 January report by Al-Mayadeen, Britain’s Supreme Court is considering the legality of London’s arms sales to Saudi Arabia, which has been used against the people of Yemen.
The non-governmental UK-based organization “Campaign Against Arms Trade” (CAAT) launched a lawsuit against the British government, accusing it of contributing to and enabling the Saudi-led coalition’s violation of international law and creating the worst humanitarian crisis of the 21st century.
The lawsuit was filed following the UK’s massive arms sales to the kingdom in 2020, with the legal review set to extend to the end of this week.
The organization’s top media coordinator, Emily Abel, remarked that London is “more interested in profit than in war crimes and the killing of civilians,” in reference to Saudi Arabia’s war on Yemen.
In a previous lawsuit launched by CAAT, the NGO won its first court case in 2019, resulting in the temporary suspension of London’s arms sales to the kingdom. The UK courts at the time claimed that the government failed to assess whether its arms sales to the kingdom violated its “commitment to human rights.”
However, former British Prime Minister Liz Truss conducted a review of the ban, and in 2020 announced that the UK would continue to export weapons to Riyadh.
According to an exclusive by The Cradle, the UK government has provided billions of pounds sterling worth of weapons and other forms of military and logistical support to Saudi Arabia since it launched its military intervention in 2015. Despite London’s claims of upholding human rights, Riyadh has targeted hospitals, markets, schools, farms, and residential areas over the duration of the war.
The war has taken the lives of hundreds of thousands of Yemenis and pushed countless others to the brink of starvation. According to most humanitarian reports, the overwhelming majority of the casualties are the direct result of the Saudi-led coalition’s actions.
The UK is the second largest arms exporter globally, after the US. As of now, London has sold over £23.3 billion of weapons to Saudi Arabia since 2015.