Oxfam International yesterday slammed arms sales to countries that are fuelling the war in Yemen and exacerbating the Yemeni people's suffering, saying it was "immoral and incoherent" for the richest countries to continue making profit at the expense of the Yemeni people's suffering".
"Making billions from arms exports which fuel the conflict while providing a small fraction of that in aid to Yemen is both immoral and incoherent. The world's wealthiest nations cannot continue to put profits above the Yemeni people," Oxfam's Yemen Country Director, Muhsin Siddiquey, said in a statement.
Citing information from the arms transfers database of the Stockholm International Peace Research Institute (SIPRI), Siddiquey explained that members of the G20 have exported more than $17 billion worth of arms to Saudi Arabia since it became involved in the conflict in Yemen in 2015 but have given only a third of that amount in aid to people caught in the world's biggest humanitarian crisis.
The statement added that the G20 heads of state are due to meet virtually later this week at a summit hosted by Saudi Arabia, adding that arms sales to the Gulf nation could come under fresh scrutiny as US president-elect, Joe Biden, is on the record saying he would stop arms sales to Saudi Arabia as it is fuelling the war in Yemen.
"When arms exports by G20 nations to other members of this coalition are included, the figure of $17 billion rises to at least $31.4 billion between 2015 and 2019, the last year for which records are available. That's more than five times the amount those member nations of the G20 have given in aid to Yemen between 2015 and 2020," it added.