I remain deeply concerned about the widely acknowledged humanitarian crisis in Yemen. Britain’s continued role in providing weapons and military support to Saudi Arabia while they are conducting military action against Yemen, including inflicting massive civilian casualties, is totally unacceptable.
The situation in Yemen has worsened as the impact of Covid-19 has led to a significant reduction in the amounts pledged by governments to aid humanitarian relief.
I was elected on a manifesto that committed to immediately suspending arms sales to Saudi Arabia and to reforming the “international rules-based order to secure justice and accountability for breaches of human rights and international law, such as the indiscriminate bombardment of civilians in Yemen. I stand by those commitments.
I am therefore deeply disappointed that the Government is now continuing to licence arms equipment for sale to Saudi Arabia and at the same time is cutting aid to Yemen
I am the original sponsor of the parliamentary motion below (dated 25 January 2021), which continued to acquire support: EDM 1399 Yemeni human rights and Saudi arms sales
That this House notes the continued disaster of the war on Yemen which has helped create what the UN has designated the worst humanitarian catastrophe anywhere in the world, threatening the lives of millions of Yemenis; further notes that the Government continues to allow arms sales to Saudi Arabia, the main foreign protagonist of the war, and continues to provide logistical support to Saudi forces in Yemen; recognises that new US president Joe Biden has committed to ending US support for the war; and calls upon the Government to end all support for the war and suspend all arms sales to Saudi Arabia immediately.
I will continue to press the Government to resume significant aid levels to Yemen and to stop arming Saudi Arabia, both inside and outside Parliament.