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Saudi Arabia: Arms Trade

Question for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office

UIN 119358, tabled on 23 November 2020

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Affairs, what assessment his Department has made of the effect of the UK's licensing of arms sales to Saudi Arabia on the (a) peace process and (b) humanitarian situation in Yemen.

Answered on

26 November 2020

The Government takes its export responsibilities seriously and every licence application is rigorously assessed against the Consolidated EU and National Arms Export licensing Criteria. We will not issue any export licences where to do so would be inconsistent with these criteria. We will not issue any export licences when there is a clear risk of a serious violation of International Humanitarian Law.

We fully support the peace process led by the UN Special Envoy Martin Griffiths, and urge the parties to engage constructively with him. A political settlement is the only way to bring long-term stability to Yemen and to address the worsening humanitarian crisis. The humanitarian situation is dire, especially given the risk of famine. The UK has shown extensive leadership in response, committing £200 million in aid this financial year, which takes our total commitment to over £1 billion since the conflict began in 2015.

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