Canada Must Make a Decision on the Light Armoured Vehicles Sales to Saudi Arabia
March 5, 2019 9:00 EST
A Coalition of Canadian civil society organizations have written an open letter to PM Justin Trudeau expressing their concern about Canada’s export of Light Armoured Vehicles (LAVs) to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Coalition calls on all states, including Canada, to ban the sale or transfer of weapons to any government where there is risk that those weapons might be used in this conflict.
Since October 2018, the Canadian government has said that it would be difficult to suspend the contract selling the LAVs to Saudi Arabia.
As the humanitarian situation in Yemen continues to deteriorate, nearly 24 million Yemenis are in need of humanitarian assistance or protection. This crisis, which has been going on for more than four years, is the direct result of repeated illegal attacks against the civilian population by all parties to the conflict, as well as severe restrictions on access to food, fuel, medical imports and humanitarian assistance.
Canada provides humanitarian assistance to Yemen and at the same time, is helping arming one of the parties in the conflict. Other countries, including Denmark, Finland, Germany, Switzerland, Greece and Austria, have either suspended or terminated arms transfers to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
The Coalition calls on the government to cancel the export permits in question. There may be financial penalties associated with the cancellation, but this cannot take priority over Canada contributing to war crimes in Yemen.
Canada must exercise its sovereign authority and suspend the transfer of LAVs to the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia.
Signed by the following Civil Society Organizations:
Action contre la faim Canada
Amnesty International Canada (English branch)
Amnistie internationale Canada francophone
Canadians for Justice and Peace in the Middle East
Group of 78
Médecins du Monde Canada
Save the Children Canada