The UK government allows the sale of weapons to most countries on its own ban list. Deals, concluded formally in accordance with the law with countries where human rights are violated, concern 80 percent of all countries that are embargoed, reports The Guardian, citing a report from the group Against Armed Violence.
The group's experts analyzed shipments to countries against which the Department of International Trade has imposed sanctions. It turned out that out of 73 such states, 58 received supplies of weapons and military equipment. Moreover, five of the countries on this list – Bahrain, Bangladesh, Colombia, Egypt and Saudi Arabia – are key partners in the British defense industry. At the same time, the authorities of all these countries are accused of human rights violations.
Specific examples of cooperation are also cited: Britain sold Pakistan police shields, sniper rifles and aircraft parts, although the country's Foreign Ministry warned Pakistan against pressure on civil society.
The British military-industrial complex provided Kenya with machine guns and Nigeria with small arms scopes, while in both countries extrajudicial harassment, torture and unlawful killings of dozens of people are taking place.
The authors of the study emphasize that this is a “systematic failure to consider the human rights situation in a country before selling weapons to it.” At the same time, they note, sales are hidden from the public and are not advertised. Government officials denied the allegations in a conversation with reporters.
Earlier in January, it was reported that the diplomat Anthony Blinken, who was chosen by US President Joe Biden as Secretary of State, had supported the supply of American arms to Ukraine.