Lord Hylton – 2015 Parliamentary Question to the Foreign and Commonwealth Office

The below Parliamentary question was asked by Lord Hylton on 2015-10-19.

To ask Her Majesty’s Government, further to the Written Answer by Baroness Anelay of St Johns on 13 October (HL2417), what is their assessment of the impact of air attacks in the United Arab Emirates, on Sa’da and its region; and whether these amount to war crimes.

Baroness Anelay of St Johns

The UK is supportive of the military intervention in Yemen by the Saudi-led Coalition, which includes the United Arab Emirates. This came at the request of President Hadi, the legitimate President of Yemen, to deter aggression by the Houthis and forces loyal to the former president Saleh. The Coalition has played a crucial role in reversing the military advance of the Houthis and forces loyal to former president Saleh, which is now helping to create the conditions for the return of the legitimate Yemeni government. We are aware of reports of alleged violations of International Humanitarian Law in Yemen including by the Saudi-led Coalition – alleged airstrikes resulting in civilian casualties and damage to civilian infrastructure – in Saada and elsewhere across the country. We take such allegations very seriously and have raised our concerns with all parties to the conflict in Yemen, including the Emiratis. Any judgement on whether specific international war crimes have occurred is a matter for international judicial decision rather than for governments or non-judicial bodies.