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British Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson says he is deeply concerned that UK munitions may be being used against civilians in the Yemen civil war.

Mr Johnson said the government feared that weapons made in the UK could be being used by the Saudi air force in attacks on civilian targets.

However, he said he did not think that a threshold was crossed which would mean that British arms sales should be suspended to Saudi Arabia. But he did had that there was a huge depth of concern among government officials in relation to the increasing civilian death toll in the Yemen.

Factions

The Yemeni Civil War began in 2015 between two factions who each claim to be the rightful Yemeni government. Houthi forces who control the capital have clashed with forces loyal to the government of Abdrabbuh Mansur Hadi in Aden.

Britain is facing mounting pressure to stop its munitions exports to the Saudis because they are backing the Yemeni government against the Iranian-supported Houthi rebel forces and there are widespread reports of civilian casualties.

Earlier this year, the United Nations reported that there were what it described as widespread and systematic assaults by the coalition on civilians, which it said was a violation of international humanitarian law.

 

 

Mr Johnson has admitted that the government is facing difficult questions which it needs to address around the use of UK missiles in the war.

He did however say that he did not have evidence that there had been an obvious breach of international humanitarian law. Mr Johnson said he had been in contact with his Saudi counterpart and was making representations on a regular basis.

British advisers are now in talks with the Saudis in a bid to avoid any more civilian deaths or injuries. However, Britain has not been in any way involved in the selection of targets.

 

 

 

 

 

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Elizabeth
A journalist from the South West of England, Elizabeth specialises in writing about politics, health and technology.