Saudi Arabia: Arms Export Licences - Statement

Part of the debate – in the House of Lords at 12:11 pm on 26th September 2019.

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Photo of The Earl of Courtown The Earl of Courtown Captain of the Queen's Bodyguard of the Yeomen of the Guard (HM Household) (Deputy Chief Whip, House of Lords) 12:11 pm, 26th September 2019

I thank the noble Lord for his questions and comments. Yes, we recognise that there have been mistakes. My right honourable friend the Secretary of State has made it quite clear that she apologises fully for these breaches, and we have every intention of halting them happening again.

The noble Lord linked the issue relating to possible human rights violations. The UK takes all allegations of violations of international humanitarian law extremely seriously. Whenever the UK receives reports of alleged violations of human rights, we routinely seek information from all credible sources—this is important—including from NGOs and international organisations. We regularly raise this issue with our allies in Saudi Arabia and are pleased that they are conducting investigations into any violations that have happened through the group that they have set up.