South Africa: Has South Africa Been Providing War Weapons to Yemen?

Yemeni capital Sanaa after airstrikes, 9 October 2015.
press release

The DA has written to the Minister of Public Enterprises, Pravin Gordhan, to ascertain the details of South Africa's involvement in the Yemeni humanitarian crisis.

It was reported that South African arms companies, including Rheinmetall Denel Munition (RDM), have profited by the selling off of weapons to factions central in the humanitarian war in Yemen, thereby aiding to gross human rights violations in the country.

According to a report by the non-profit, Open Secrets, South African arms companies exported mortars, mortal shells, artillery guns and shells, ammunition, armoured combat vehicles and software used in electronic warfare to the tune of R2.81 billion to Saudi Arabia and almost double that amount - R4.74 billion - in these weapons to the United Arab Emirates (UAE). Both Saudi Arabia and the UAE are parties in the civil regional war that wages in Yemen since 2015.

The DA wants to know from Gordhan:

What agreement has been put in place with South African arms companies including RDM?

What is the value of these agreements to parties central to the conflict?

What has RDM profited from these deals?

If these deals are in place, RDM - and South Africa itself - may be guilty of contributing to the gross human rights violations in Yemen. Mr Gordhan needs to provide urgent clarity.

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