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

My Lords, I cannot agree with the noble Lord. The judgment of the Court of Appeal back in June endorsed the view of the Divisional Court of July 2017 that the processes we have applied were rigorous, robust and multi-layered. The noble Lord is quite right that, regrettably, there were errors in that process, which are very rare. My right honourable friend the Secretary of State has commissioned this independent investigation to ensure that these do not happen again. As the noble Lord has said—he drew attention to humanitarian law—we have undertaken not to grant new licences for exports to Saudi Arabia and its coalition partners for items which might be used in the conflict in Yemen.