– UK must stop selling weapons to Israel or face legal action – anti-war group (RT, Aug 17, 2014):
The UK government is being taken to court over its continuing multi-million pound program of selling arms to Israel after claims they could have been used in Gaza. Unless it stops, its issuing of licenses to arms manufacturers will be legally challenged.
The lawsuit comes from the UK-based Campaign Against Arms Trade (CAAT), which is represented by law firm Leigh Day. The firm wrote to the UK’s business secretary, Vince Cable, stating that the government was acting unlawfully and that a judicial review of its activities would be carried out if it refuses to stop the exports, the Guardian reports.
“If arms from the UK are being used to commit crimes against humanitarian law, and human rights law, then export licences for these materials must be revoked immediately,” Rosa Curling, of the human rights team at Leigh Day, said in a letter obtained by the newspaper.
“If this is not done, the government’s current policy is unlawful and susceptible to legal challenge. We have asked the government to clarify the review of the arms export licences and requested details of all current licences to understand what is being sent so we can get a better picture of whether any of the arms supplied by the UK have been or may be used in criminal acts.”
CAAT recently outlined the issue on its website, saying: “Israeli equipment used in Gaza in the 2008-9 conflict “almost certainly” contained UK-supplied components. Yet the UK has approved over £47 million in weapons sales to Israel since then – and spends millions on buying its “battle-tested” weapons exports. The UK government is supplying Israel, It has been supporting it and providing it with succour. It cannot deny responsibility for the acts it is carrying out.”