CAAT renews call for an end to UK arms sales to Israel

By agency reporter
August 9, 2018

Israeli military air strikes on Gaza killed at least three people last night (8/9 August 2018), including a pregnant woman and her 18 month old daughter.

This follows months of increased tensions and violence, including shootings at protests on the Gaza border in May 2018. Reports from health officials in Gaza say that Israeli forces have killed at least 154 Palestinians since 30 March when protests began. Despite this, says Campaign Against Arms Trade, UK arms sales to Israel have continued. 

Since the 'Operation Protective Edge' military campaign, the UK has licensed over £340 million worth of arms to Israel. Licences include components for drones, combat aircraft and helicopters. 2017 saw a £183 million licences for 'technology for military radars.'

In 2014, there was a debate in government about UK arms sales to Israel, with Baroness Warsi resigning in opposition to the continued arms sales. A review by government at the time found 12 licences for arms which are likely to have been used in the 2014 war.

Previously, in 2010, the then Foreign Secretary David Miliband said Israeli equipment used in the attack on Gaza "almost certainly" contained UK-supplied components.

Andrew Smith of Campaign Against Arms Trade said today: “Last night’s bombing follows months of increased tensions and killings. It is another terrible reminder of the permanent threat of war that Palestinians are living under every day.

"If weapons continue to be sold then it is only a matter of time before they are used again. By continuing to arm Israeli forces the UK is sending a message of support for the decades of repression that have already been inflicted.

"The UK government should be using its influence to push for a peaceful and just solution, not promoting arms sales.”

* Campaign Against Arms Trade https://www.caat.org.uk

[Ekk/6]

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