Four NGOs call on Spain to cease arms sales to Saudi Arabia and Israel

ARMS CALL: The NGOs said Spain should stop shipments to Saudi Arabia and Israel ARMS CALL: The NGOs said Spain should stop shipments to Saudi Arabia and Israel Shutterstock

FOUR NGOs have said Pedro Sanchez’s new government should immediately halt light weapons and ammunition sales to Saudi Arabia and Israel.

Amnesty International, Greenpeace, FundiPau and Oxfam International made the call as part of the Control Arms campaign. The awareness drive seeks to highlight the risks to human rights from exporting arms to the countries.

Oxfam said it was attempting to make sure the Arms Trade Law passed in Spain in 2007 was being properly applied so there could be control and transparency over sales.

Chema Vera, Oxfam International’s director, said the ending of sales to Saudi Arabia was justified due to its intervention in the Yemen Civil War.

Saudi Arabia is Spain’s largest arms client outside of the EU and NATO with sales worth around €270.2 million annually.

Santiago Beltran, of Amnesty International, said weapons exports should be suspended to Israel due to alleged human rights violations. These include the death of more than 100 Palestinians in Israeli military shootings since March.

Spain sold €1.4 million worth of arms to the country last year and denied licenses to export a further €1.9 million.

The NGOs have called for greater parliamentary oversight over arms trading in Spain and to stop further exports where they posed a threat to human rights.

Joe Gerrard

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