22:38 GMT26 October 2020
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    The pending US sale of weapons to Saudi Arabia gives the US Congress an opportunity to push for Riyadh to be held responsible for possible war crimes in Yemen, Human Rights Watch senior researcher Belkis Wille said in a statement on Thursday.

    WASHINGTON (Sputnik) — Last week, the US Department of Defense announced plans to sell Riyadh $1.15 billion worth of Abrams main battle tanks and other combat equipment, pending Congressional approval.

    "By introducing a resolution of disapproval in the next few weeks, any [Congress] member can put the brakes on the sale and use their opposition to demand action from the Pentagon and the Saudis," Wille stated.

    According to the United Nations, at least 3,700 Yemeni civilians have been killed since the Saudi-led coalition began operations against Houthi rebels in March 2015.

    A coalition investigation into eight airstrikes recommended compensation for the victims of only one, a July 24, 2015 bombing that killed at least 65 civilians, Wille noted.

    Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International have called for an independent investigation into more than 70 coalition airstrikes, while the United Nations has documented more than 100 that could be in violation of international law.

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    Tags:
    war crimes, Human Rights Watch, Belkis Wille, Saudi Arabia, Yemen, US
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