Oxfam Study: At Least 87 Yemeni Civilians Killed by UK and US Weapons from January 2021-February 2022

Oxfam Study: At Least 87 Yemeni Civilians Killed by UK and US Weapons from January 2021-February 2022

Oxfam unveiled that “At least 87 civilians were killed by airstrikes from the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen using weapons supplied by the UK and US between January 2021 and February 2022.”

The charity accused the UK government of ignoring an identifiable “pattern of harm” caused by the indiscriminate bombing – and argues it amounts to legal grounds for Britain to end elements of its lucrative arms trade with Riyadh.

Martin Butcher, a policy adviser at Oxfam, said that there had been 431 airstrikes in the period monitored, roughly one a day, and that the “intensity of these attacks would not have been possible without a ready supply of arms.”

The sheer number of attacks, the 87 civilians killed and 136 wounded amounted to, Butcher added, “a pattern of violence against civilians” which all parties to the conflict, including arms suppliers, had failed to prevent.

A further 13 airstrikes carried out by British or American-made jets had taken place on hospitals and clinics, the Oxfam research added, with farms and homes routinely hit. Civilians were forced to leave their homes or places of shelter after a total of 293 raids from the air.

According to the charity, “The Saudi air force uses Typhoon and Tornado aircraft sold and maintained by Britain and F-15s from the US.”

Some of the bombs used, such as the Paveway IV, are made in the UK – and the Campaign Against Arms Trade [CAAT] estimates that the total value of UK arms sales to Saudi since it began its aggression on Yemen war in 2015 to be £23bn.

At the end of this month, the high court will hear a fresh appeal from CAAT against the UK’s decision to resume the sale of arms to Saudi Arabia that could be used in Yemen in 2020. It stresses that the UK is acting unlawfully by ignoring potential war crimes.

Then trade secretary Liz Truss had ordered the restart – halted because CAAT won an earlier case at the court of appeal – after a review concluded there had been only “isolated incidents” of airstrikes that breached humanitarian law.

Source: the Guardian