UK arms sales to Saudi Arabia lawful: London High Court

| Updated: Jul 11, 2017 00:03 IST

London[U.K.], July 10 (ANI) : London's High Court has ruled that that arms sales carried out by Britain to Saudi Arabia are "lawful". The ruling came in a case brought up by the British group Campaign Against Arms Trade that relied in part on secret evidence. Lord Justice Burnett and Justice Haddon-Cave dismissed the campaigners' application for judicial review, saying the decision to carry on the arms trade was not irrational or unlawful. British group Campaign Against Arms Trade brought the case to the High Court, saying Saudi Arabia is involved in military operation in Yemen and British bombs and fighter jets were being used to fuel violence in Yemen where more than 10,000 people have been killed since 2015. CAAT said the government is guilty of "repeated and serious breaches" of international humanitarian law. Referring to the secret evidence as "closed material," the judges said that the secret evidence seen by them will not be made public for national security reasons and "provides valuable additional support for the conclusion that the decisions taken by the Secretary of State not to suspend or cancel arms sales to Saudi Arabia were rational." The group criticised the refusal of the Secretary of State for International Trade to suspend export licences for the sale or transfer of arms and military equipment and its decision to continue granting new licences.In the last two years, the UK has licensed the sales of £3 billion (US$3.86 billion) worth of arms to the Saudi government, with which Britain is a longstanding ally, the Telegraph reported. (ANI)