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Military Aid

Volume 486: debated on Tuesday 13 January 2009

To ask the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what human rights assessment the Government makes before granting military aid to a foreign government. (244525)

Every case is considered individually and kept under constant review. All decisions to provide a country with assistance are taken to encourage adherence to international humanitarian law, or to help address issues of concern. The UK abides by its commitments under international law, including those under international human rights law and expects all countries to comply with their international legal obligations. When providing military equipment, the Government judge all military aid against the consolidated EU and National Arms Export Licensing Criteria. Criterion 2 refers specifically to:

“the respect of human rights and fundamental freedoms in the country of final destination.”

The UK would not undertake the export of military equipment if there was a clear risk that it would be used for human rights abuses.