Saudi Arabia

War profiteer of the month: Textron

Textron is an American global aerospace, defense, security and advanced technologies industrial conglomerate. Textron includes several companies including Bell Helicopter, Cessna Aircraft, and Beechcraft, Textron Systems, and has offices across the USA and in the United Kingdom.

European activists lobby European Parliament for arms Saudi arms embargo

The European Parliament has voted in support of an arms embargo against Saudi Arabia. The European Network Against the Arms Trade (ENAAT) were part of efforts to lobby Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) to impose the European-wide arms embargo. The lobbying action included groups from Germany, UK, Spain, Finland, France, Italy, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Belgium.

European parliament votes for arms embargo against Saudi Arabia

A destroyed house in Yemen. Photo: wikipediaA destroyed house in Yemen. Photo: wikipedia

The European Parliament has voted in support of an arms embargo against Saudi Arabia. The European Network Against the Arms Trade (ENAAT) were part of efforts to lobby Members of the European Parliament (MEPs) to impose the European-wide arms embargo. The lobbying action included groups from Germany, UK, Spain, Finland, France, Italy, Sweden, the Netherlands, and Belgium. Groups from across Europe tweeted and emailed MEP's using the #StopArmingSaudiArabia hashtag, and the vote was passed on the 25th February, despite being heavily opposed by diplomats from Saudi Arabia, who met with and wrote to MEPs before the vote.

The Spanish export of arms in 2014: between illegality and joint arms programs

During 2014, Spain made defence materials exports worth €3.203 million, whilst in total €3.666 million worth of exports were authorized. The value of the actual exports has decreased by 18% in comparison to that reached in 2013, from €3.907 million. Nonetheless, the tendency during the last 10 years has been a continued increase, as revealed in the following graph.

Spanish exports of defence material 2005-2014

The Kwerekwere are stealing our jobs! Instead, stop the wars…

Terry Crawford-Browne

Terry Crawford-Browne is a former international banker who became a peace activist during the 1980s. He lives in Cape Town.

Renewed xenophobic violence in South Africa has appalled the world. The violence is directed at black African refugees, not white beneficiaries of the past apartheid era, yet reminiscent of the apartheid era, the response of a bewildered government is to send the army into affected townships, rather than address the root causes of massive migrations in Africa.

The Guardian newspaper reported in England “with every outbreak of xenophobic violence, the refrain is the same: ‘the kwerekwere (foreigners) are stealing our jobs. Shops are torched. Streets are barricaded... Mobs hound Somalis, Mozambicans, Zimbabweans, Pakistanis and Bangladeshis from their homes and businesses.”i

Europe's oldest embargo - arms sales to superpower China

Frank Slijper

After the bloody suppression of protests in Beijing's Tiananmen Square in 1989, the European Union (and the US) ordered an arms embargo that applies until today. From a human rights perspective this is fully justified: the situation remains appalling and attempts at democratic reforms are nipped in the bud. At the same time the embargo is also clearly politically motivated, to keep China as small as possible in military terms. While the economic relationship with China has grown, military co-operation rightly remains a thorny issue. Despite cracks in the embargo it won't be off the table any time soon. Yet it is a question how long the blockade will be maintained with China strengthening its power base.

Saudi Arabia

31/03/1998

1 Conscription

conscription does not exist

Conscription has never existed in Saudi Arabia.

The armed forces have increased and been modernized significantly since the 1960s, which was deemed essential to protect oil wealth. After the 1990 Gulf War King Fahd announced a doubling of the army's size and the creation of a new reserve system.

Saudi officials have indicated, on several occasions, that conscription may be introduced.

Concluding observations of the Human Rights Committee: Libyan Arab Jamahiriya

CCPR/C/79/Add.45
23 November 1994

(...)

13. Another area of concern is that of freedom of religion. The severe punishments for heresy (which are said not to have been used) and the restrictions on the right to change religion appear to be inconsistent with article 18 of the Covenant. The lack of provision for conscientious objection to military service is another concern.

(...)

Source: http://www.unhchr.ch/tbs/doc.nsf/0/e1c467ffbc29572841256324003e218a?Opendocument

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