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U.S.-backed Saudi airstrikes that have been carried out for nearly three years have left Yemen in the grips of a cholera epidemic and a near-famine. (Photo: United Nations OHCA/Flickr/cc)

While US Backs Carnage, Norway Cites Humanitarian Crisis in Yemen and Halts Weapons Sales

While U.S. fuels war, Norway takes action to end its complicity in Saudi-led airstrikes

Julia Conley, staff writer

Citing grave concerns over the humanitarian crisis that's exploded in Yemen as a result of the U.S.-backed war in the impoverished country, Norway has taken action to curb its support of the violence and carnage.

The Norwegian Ministry of Foreign Affairs announced Wednesday that the country would stop supplying weapons and ammunition to the United Arab Emirates (UAE), which is part of the Saudi-led coalition that has been carrying out airstrikes in Yemen for nearly three years.

"The armed conflict is serious and there is great concern about the humanitarian situation," said the ministry in a statement.

The Saudis' war against Houthi rebels has killed more than 10,000 civilians according to U.N. estimates, left three million displaced, and has set off a cholera epidemic that's affected more than a million people and killed more than 2,000. More than eight million Yemenis are "a step away" from famine due to a number of blockades imposed by the Saudis.

Norway exported nearly $10 million worth of weapons and ammunition to the UAE, which is part of the Saudi-led coalition, in 2016.

Meanwhile, the U.S. has garnered global condemnation for continuing to supply the Saudis with billions of dollars worth of weapons and ammunition while also providing logistical military support for their assault on Yemen.

"Countries such as the USA, UK and France, which continue to supply coalition members with arms, are allowing Saudi Arabia and its allies to flagrantly flout international law and risk being complicit in grave violations, including war crimes," said Amnesty International in November.

On social media, critics urged the countries supporting the Saudis to take direct action to end their complicity, as Norway has.


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