Billions of pounds of arms are exported to dictatorial, or near-dictatorial regimes that commit appalling human rights violations with a disturbing lack of transparency, according to Left Foot Forward.
The report was issued as Yemen, which has been showered with Saudi bombs, many made in Britain, for around eight years, is said to be nowhere near a ceasefire.
On October 3, around 50 NGOs said that food shortages, power cuts, and a collapsing currency are upending daily life in Yemen as peace talks make no headway in restoring a ceasefire that lapsed one year ago.
In 2022, weapons made in Britain and exported to some of the most oppressive regimes in the world almost doubled to £8.5bn, marking the highest level since records began.
This was the finding of a report compiled by Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), which works to end the international arms trade. The organization’s Annual Report: UK Arms Exports in 2022, published on October 5, 2023, found that the £8.5bn figure had been driven, in part, by the delivery of Eurofighter Typhoons to Qatar, along with substantial bomb and missile deliveries to Qatar and Saudi Arabia.
The report shows that the highest level of arms exports from the UK were to countries with poor human rights records and repressive regimes. This includes £2.7bn worth of arms being exported to Qatar, £1.1bn to Saudi Arabia, and £424m to Turkey.