While Italian workers express solidarity with their Yemeni fellow-workers by refusing to load two electricity generators onto a Saudi Arabian ship. The 'Bahri-Yanbu' had been loaded arms in Antwerp earlier this month before pulling into port in Genoa.
Meanwhile, in contrast to these humanitarian efforts weasel politicians seek loopholes so that they can continue supplying Saudi Arabia.
In the UK, the foreign secretary, Jeremy Hunt, negotiated a loophole in a German arms export ban to Saudi Arabia that will ensure UK-supplied planes will continue to be used in the war in Yemen. The aircraft, Tornado fighter bombers and Eurofighter Typhoons, are used in the Saudi bombing raids in the four-year civil war in Yemen.
The aircraft were developed by consortiums of European companies and Germany supplies spares for them. The two wings of the German coalition government became embroiled in a tense battle this year over whether to extend a pre-existing ban on arms sales to Saudi. They reached a complex compromise last month, which appears to have satisfied British concerns about the viability of the UK-supplied aircraft.
Andrew Mitchell, the former Conservative international development secretary, said, “It is shameful and a profound moral failure that the UK has been unable to persuade Saudi and Emirati allies to end the bombing of innocent Yemeni civilians.”
In the United States, the Trump administration is considering an emergency declaration that would allow it to make an arms shipment to Saudi Arabia without the approval of Congress.