Rheinmetall Denel Munition: Murder and Mayhem in Yemen

Open Secrets: Unaccountable
Rheinmetall Denel Munition: Murder and mayhem in Yemen

Companies with South African links have been allowed to supply Saudi Arabia and its allies with weapons — despite the humanitarian destruction the war in Yemen has wrought.

Yemen is at the epicentre of a regionalised civil war. Over the past five years, thousands of combatants have been killed and United Nations (UN) reports show there is evidence that civilians have been deliberately targeted in the brutal conflict.

A South African-based defence firm has been involved in selling weaponry suspected of fuelling the crisis linked to human rights violations in Yemen. This practice was halted only in 2019 when export controls tightened by the South African government came into effect.

Yemen now finds itself in a dire situation. Disease is rife, schools, factories and hospitals have been destroyed, 22.2 million people are in desperate need of food, and an estimated 85,000 children have starved to death.

This has contributed to the UN naming Yemen home to one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises.

Such unimaginable suffering not only requires urgent humanitarian intervention, but also scrutiny and accountability of those who have enabled these human rights violations and profited from this misery. South Africa should not be exempt.

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