Amnesty on Alert: UAE Siphoning Arms to Yemen Militias Accused of War Crimes
By Staff, Agencies
Amnesty International accused the United Arab Emirates of providing Western arms to militias accused of committing rights abuses.
Relatively, several European countries are accused of violating their own laws on arms exports.
The United Arab Emirates is diverting arms supplied by Western countries to "unaccountable militias accused of war crimes" in Yemen, Amnesty International warned Wednesday.
"Emirati forces receive billions of dollars' worth of arms from Western states and others, only to siphon them off to militias in Yemen that answer to no-one and are known to be committing war crimes," Amnesty said in releasing its report on the arms diversions.
"The proliferation of these fighting forces is a recipe for disaster for Yemeni civilians who have already been killed in their thousands, while millions more are on the brink of famine as a direct result of the war," the human rights group said.
Since 2015, Western states have supplied the UAE with at least $3.5 billion worth of arms.
Australia, Belgium, Brazil, Bulgaria, Czechia, France, Germany, South Africa, South Korea, Turkey, the UK and the USA are among countries that have recently sold weapons to the UAE.
"Many of the states that continue to supply arms to the UAE are party to the global Arms Trade Treaty. Some have other legal obligations as EU members or under domestic laws not to transfer arms being used to commit war crimes,” Amnesty said.
The UAE and Saudi Arabia are heading a brutal military campaign against Yemen, pushing the country to the brink of famine, in addition to killing and injuring scores of Yemenis.
The accusations leveled by Amnesty follow a report by CNN that US weaponry supplied to Saudi Arabia and the UAE was being used by al-Qaida and other militias in Yemen.