I have recently had several constituents contact me regarding the conflict in Yemen and the role of Saudi Arabia.
Over 10,000 people have been killed in Yemen since 2015 and the humanitarian situation in many parts of the country is dire. The UN estimates that almost 18 million people have no secure access to food and that over 8 million are at risk of starvation. Millions more also lack access to safe water, sanitation or healthcare.
There is no military solution to this conflict and it is therefore vital that a peacefully negotiated resolution can be secured. It is therefore incredibly disappointing that, despite promises from the Government to bring a ceasefire resolution to the UN Security Council in October 2016, there has still been no progress on this since then.
I share concerns regarding potential violations of international humanitarian law (IHL) in Yemen and therefore back calls for a comprehensive, independent UN-led investigation into alleged violations of IHL in Yemen, including airstrikes on civilians by the Saudi-led coalition.
I also believe that the Government should impose an immediate suspension on any further arms sales to the Saudi-led coalition for use in the Yemen conflict, as Norway, Germany, Belgium and Spain have done, until such an investigation has been concluded. They should also use their influence to secure a UN resolution demanding an immediate ceasefire and resumption of peace talks in Yemen.