Two-thirds of countries classified as “not free” because of their dire record on human rights and civil liberties have received weapons licensed by the UK government over the past decade, new analysis reveals.
Between 2011-2020, the UK licensed £16.8bn of arms to countries criticised by Freedom House, a US government-funded human rights group.
Of the 53 countries castigated for a poor record on political and human rights on the group’s list, the UK sold arms and military equipment to 39.
Noteworthy recipients include Libya, which received £9.3m of assault rifles, military vehicle components and ammunition. Last week it was the focus of international peace talks to stabilise a country where armed groups and foreign powers compete for influence.
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