Yemen: Four years on, fears of further violations with no end in sight to brutal conflict
All warring parties in Yemen continue to inflict unimaginable suffering on the civilian population, Amnesty International said today on the fourth anniversary of the devastating conflict.
Since the Saudi and UAE-led coalition’s bombardment of Yemen began in March 2015, Amnesty International has documented a horrific catalogue of crimes under international law perpetrated by all, including Yemeni government forces, the Coalition and allied forces, as well as by the Huthis and allied forces.
“After four years of bloodshed in the Arab world’s poorest country, Yemenis can no longer bear the catastrophic humanitarian impact of the war. The international community must step up efforts to ensure that civilians are protected, obstacles to humanitarian assistance and arbitrary restrictions on import of essential goods are lifted, and impunity for war crimes and other violations is ended,” said Samah Hadid, Amnesty International’s Middle East Campaigns Director.
The organization has documented violations by all parties to the conflict over the past four years, including indiscriminate attacks, arbitrary detentions, enforced disappearance, torture and other ill-treatment, sexual assault, and the imposition of restrictions on the entry and movement of essential goods and aid. Some of these amount to war crimes.
“Enough is enough. With the number of victims in Yemen spiralling, and the dire humanitarian situation worsening daily, these devastating violations must come to an end and those responsible must be held to account,” said Samah Hadid.
A consortium of Western states - including the USA, UK, and France - continue to supply members of the Saudi and UAE-led coalition with arms despite overwhelming evidence that they have been used to commit war crimes. Only a handful of countries have suspended arms sales, these include the Netherlands, Norway, Denmark, Finland and Switzerland.
For four years, Amnesty International has been campaigning for the suspension of arms transfers to the Saudi and UAE-led coalition.
“Western states must immediately halt the arms trade to warring parties. They must put human rights and the lives of millions of Yemeni civilians and their own legal obligations above lucrative arms sales,” said Samah Hadid.
For more information, read this open letter, co-signed by a coalition of civil society organizations, calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to scrap Canada’s multi-billion-dollar arms deal with Saudi Arabia.