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Saudi Arabia and UAE Fight for Impunity in Yemen Conflict

Last month, the Netherlands’ ambassador to the United Nations in Geneva said the United Nations Human Rights Council (UNHRC) had “failed the people of Yemen” by rejecting the renewal of an investigation into alleged human rights abuses and war crimes…
People stand in front of a damaged building
News

Beijing’s Growing Repression Needs a Global Response

The Covid-19 pandemic has caused the suspension of many high-profile international visits, but Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi’s appearance in Italy today – to be followed by visits to France, Germany, and the Netherlands – presents an opportunity…
Chinese Foreign Minister Wang Yi speaks during the Special ASEAN-China Foreign Ministers' meeting on the Novel Coronavirus in Vientiane, Laos, February 20, 2020.
News

Arms Sales to Rights-Abusing Countries Fuel Atrocities Against Civilians

Last week, the French government published its latest report on arms exports, documenting sales and transfers throughout 2019. After Qatar, the governments of Saudi Arabia and Egypt received the greatest amounts, accounting for €1.4 billion and €1.0…
French-made Leclerc tanks of the Saudi-led coalition are deployed on the outskirts of the Yemeni port city of Aden during a military operation, August 3, 2015.
News

Other Dangerous Crowd Control Weapons Remain in Use

This week, France’s Interior Minister Christophe Castaner announced that French police would stop using the controversial GLI-F4 tear gas grenade. This move is long overdue, but doesn’t address serious concerns about other weapons…
Protester picks up a tear gas grenade during a police charge on December 8, 2019 on the Champs Elysees, Paris.
News

Conduct in Yemen War Means UK Government Should Not Resume Arms Sales

“The future for our defence sector is a very bright one.” So said Fleur Thomas, head of exports for the United Kingdom’s Ministry of Defence, as her government prepares to help host Europe’s biggest arms fair in London this…
Yemen apartment destroyed by airstrike.
News

Arms Sales Suspensions and Damning Report on Khashoggi Murder Are a Strong Signal to Riyadh

In a powerful rebuke to the Trump administration and a strong signal to Gulf states, the US Senate voted yesterday, 53 to 45, to block arms sales worth billions of dollars to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE), among other…
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News

UK Suspends New Arms Licenses to Saudis After Losing Appeal in Face of Yemen War Violations

Yesterday I walked a route I know well from my former days as a trainee lawyer, through the cavernous Royal Courts of Justice in London, to hear three judges issue a ruling. It was all over in 15 minutes, but my colleagues and I left…
 Destruction at the location of an air strike at Radfan Ceramics Factory, west of Sanaa, Yemen, on September 23, 2015.
News

Bold Move Contrasts with Secretary-General’s Inaction

The decision by the United Nations special rapporteur on extrajudicial executions, Agnes Callamard, to investigate the brutal killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi shows courage and initiative. It is likely to anger Saudi Arabia and the…
Candles lit by activists protesting the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi are placed outside Saudi Arabia's Consulate in Istanbul. © 2018 Lefteris Pitarakis/AP Photo
News

Hundreds of Yemeni Children Killed and Wounded in Airstrikes

Today, like many days, my cell phone was flooded with photos of children recently killed in Yemen by Saudi Arabia-led coalition airstrikes. But also today, United Nations Secretary-General António Guterres released his report only…
Boys walk on textbooks scattered on the ground after an air strike hit a school book storage building in the northwestern city of Saada, Yemen January 13, 2018.
News

Appoint Strong Experts, Press All Parties to Cooperate

Bombing and shelling of civilians. Denial of access to food and medicine. Landmines and cluster bombs. Torture and abduction. Child soldiers. For more than two years, international, regional, and Yemeni human rights groups called on the…
Saudi-led coalition aircraft struck three apartment buildings in Sanaa on August 25, 2017, killing at least 16 civilians, including seven children, and wounding another 17, including eight children. After an international outcry, the coalition admitted to
News

France Bows Out, Leaving an Open Field

To avoid the embarrassment of a public loss, the French government has decided to drop out of the race to join the United Nations Human Rights Council (HRC). Unless another country steps up, Spain and Australia are guaranteed to win…
Delegates arrive for the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council in Geneva, Switzerland, February 27, 2017.
News

Companies Should Put Safeguards in Place to Protect Workers Abroad

Our lives are full of products produced in faraway countries, under conditions we don’t know – think of the vegetables you eat, the clothes you wear, or even the device you are reading this on. Human Rights Watch has documented serious abuses in the…
A 13-year-old boy works in artisanal and small-scale gold mining in Obuasi. He dropped out of school at the age of 12 and would like to continue his education.
News

While Russia Loses Bid in Close Vote

How did Saudi Arabia, which has been indiscriminately bombing Yemeni civilians for 18 months, just get re-elected to the Human Rights Council, the United Nations' premier human rights body? Unlike Russia, whose failure to retain its council seat…
A boy walks on the rubble of houses destroyed by Saudi-led air strikes in Khamis Bani-Saad district of the western province of al-Mahweet, Yemen, October 27, 2016.
News

A Leader in Rejecting Weapons So Deadly to Civilians

France has completed the destruction of its stockpile of 34,876 cluster munition rockets and artillery projectiles that contained 14.9 million explosive submunitions, meeting a key obligation of the international ban treaty. It has also strongly condemned…
A pile of shoes during the annual demonstration by NGO Humanity and Inclusion denouncing antipersonnel landmines and cluster munitions in Lyon on September 20, 2014.
News
At the end of May, the Obama administration quietly suspended transfers of cluster munitions to Saudi Arabia following concern raised by evidence showing that the Saudi-led coalition had used US cluster munitions in or near civilian areas in Yemen. A…
A failed BLU-108 canister, with two submunitions still attached, that was delivered by a CBU-105 Sensor Fuzed Weapon during an attack on the quarry of the Amran Cement Factory on February 15, 2016.
News
The devastation of Yemen should be at the top of the agenda when US President Barack Obama visits Saudi Arabia today to attend the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) summit in Riyadh. Five GCC members, led by Saudi Arabia and armed in part by the US, are part…
The home of Muhammad Munfarih, which was destroyed in a fourth airstrike on the residential neighborhood of al-Hassaba in Sanaa, the capital, on September 21, 2015. The airstrike killed Munfarih and 17 other members of his family.
News
Two weeks from now will mark the one-year anniversary of the war in Yemen – when nine countries led by Saudi Arabia began an aerial bombing campaign in Yemen. Many of the airstrikes over the past year appear to have been unlawful – including 36 attacks…
A boy stands in a classroom at his school after it was hit by a Saudi-led air strike in Yemen's capital Sanaa July 20, 2015.
News
The fighting in Yemen over the past year has been unimaginably grim – yet has largely gone unnoticed. At least 2,000 civilians have been killed since March 2015, according to the United Nations human rights office – the majority of them in…
yemen attack site sanaa