September 11, 2016 (KAMPALA) - Israel sold rifles to Uganda in 2007, which the latter transferred to South Sudan’s national security service in 2014, the United Nations said in a report.
- Arms and light weapons have been used by both warring parties in South Sudan to commit abuses (Photo courtesy of SSANSA)
According to the Associated Press(AP) Israel said it didn’t receive a request from the East African nation for weapon transfer.
Eitay Mack, an Israeli lawyer was quoted saying that weapons export licenses require knowledge of end users and mid users, meaning the transfer would either have been done with Israel’s knowledge or would have prompted an investigation into the offending company.
He said no investigation was known to have been opened.
Israel’s opposition lawmaker, Tamar Zandberg told AP that Israel stopped sending firearms to South Sudan in 2013, but that export licenses for surveillance equipment continues.
The European Union has placed an arms embargo on South Sudan, while the United States has imposed sanctions on top military officials from both sides of the country’s conflict.
In August, the UN Security Council approved an additional regional protection force to enter South Sudan, but decided against an arms embargo on the country.
"Even without an international arms embargo, states should unilaterally suspend arms transfers given the likelihood that arms would be used to commit human rights violations," Elizabeth Deng, Amnesty International’s South Sudan researcher told AP.
Israel was one of the first countries to recognise South Sudan’s independence when the latter broke away from Sudan in July 2011.
Since South Sudan descended into civil war in December 2013, tens of thousands of people have been killed and millions displaced.