Arms sales to Saudi Arabia ‘unlawful’, rules UK’s top court

A court rules the British government acted unlawfully in the way it sold weapons to Saudi Arabia that may have been used in Yemen conflict.

British arms sales to Saudi Arabia that were used in Yemen‘s war have been declared unlawful by the court of appeal because they contributed to indiscriminate civilian casualties in the bombing campaign from the Saudi-led coalition.

The court’s decision does not mean the United Kingdom must immediately halt arms exports, but it does mean it has to wait before it is able to grant next arms export licences to Saudi Arabia.

The court has found that the government’s procedure for granting licences to export arms to Saudi Arabia is illegal.

The court says the UK’s Secretary of State for International Trade Liam Fox, made no assessments of whether the Saudi-led coalition had committed violations of international humanitarian during the Yemen conflict.

Andrew Smith, the media coordinator for Campaign Against Arms Trade, joins Al Jazeera from London to discuss this.