In response to ABC Investigations’ findings that Australian arms are being sold to the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia – both countries accused of human rights violations and even war crimes in the conflict in Yemen – Oxfam Australia’s Advocacy and Campaigns Manager Conor Costello said:
“Shocking numbers of civilians continue to be killed as a result of the devastating war in Yemen.
“The findings of the ABC investigation on Australia’s arms sales, published today, is yet more evidence of the real and present risk that arms sold by Australia to the United Arab Emirates and Saudi Arabia could be being used in Yemen in ways that could breach the rules of war and prolong the conflict.
“The investigation also demonstrates once again a concerning lack of transparency and accountability in Australia’s arms export system.
“In light of this, Australia must immediately halt arms sales to countries involved in the conflict in Yemen, including Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. And, as the suffering of Yemeni civilians continues to increase, Australia needs to provide further humanitarian aid for the response.”
For interviews with Conor Costello or Oxfam staff in Yemen, please contact Dylan Quinnell on 0450 668 350 or firstname.lastname@example.org
Notes to editors:
- Since July 2015, Oxfam has reached more than 3 million people in Yemen with water and sanitation services, including providing water by truck, repairing water systems and delivering filters and jerry cans, as well as building toilets and providing cash assistance and food vouchers.
- Oxfam and its local partners are also working to prevent the spread of cholera in Yemen and helping health authorities and local response teams spread information about how cholera is transmitted, its symptoms and prevention.