A Note on Saudi State Sponsored Terrorism
At a time when even climate change is affecting the future of Mankind and the right to life and overall the fundamental rights of Mankind, terrorism in diverse and extensive dimensions is deemed as a historic about turn, and worse still is that it has moved towards being state sponsored. The creation, expansion and support for terrorism that is state sponsored has dealt a huge blow to the international order, to a point which it has made this order’s performance and objective doubtable.
With fully supporting the opposition to Bashar Assad, the Syrian President, since the outset of the crisis in 2011 to-date has continued to arm the opposition groups in this conflict, which has spread throughout the world. The establishment of extremist and Wahhabi schools in Pakistan and Afghanistan over the years has resulted in events such as 9/11 and extensive insecurity along Iran’s eastern borders, clearly shows the turning of this country [Saudi Arabia] into a supporter of terrorism of the state sponsored kind. Almost all active terrorists from 9/11 to the recent global events have either been Saudi citizens and or have studied in schools financially and ideologically backed by the government. This factor is evident in the US Congress recent report regarding Saudi Arabia’s involvement in the 9/11 attacks.1
Furthermore, in the international dimension, this country moves towards the rejection of most of the human rights order values. The last Amnesty International Annual Report, mentions the extensive violations committed outside the country, with a stress on the aggression in Yemen and acts of war crimes and extensive and bloody attacks against schools, hospitals and civilian places. By ignoring international law and human rights principles, is now a member of the so-called Friends of Syria, a supporter of extremist and terror groups in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iraq and etc. and a buyer of most of the conventional and unconventional weapons in the region. 2
Not only internationally, but domestically the Saudi government is faced with serious violations of human rights. The most highlighted right which this government continues to deny and reject against its citizens, is the right to self-determination, which is a reflection of the inherent dignity of Mankind as an independent creature with will power. Crackdowns, persecution and the taking of life in the domestic practice of the Saudi government is clear, which in a way seems like state sponsored terrorism. In its last Annual Report, Amnesty International highlights the human rights violating restrictions imposed against the Shia minorities in the country, to arbitrary detentions, unjust punishments, torture, and taking of life and violation of women’s rights.
The inaction of influential international institutions towards the grave violation of human rights that are committed through the intervention and aggression of the Saudi government is a grave concern.
Overall, on the basis of international law and human rights principles, the Saudi government is a violator in the following instances:
1 – Violation of fundamental human rights and committing war crimes and crimes against humanity against its own people and the regional nations and the world through resorting to force and arming terror groups.
2 – Violation of the independence of countries through intervention, support and guidance of terror groups inside various countries.
3 – Support, creation and strengthening of terror groups and disregard for the International Convention on the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, and the various enforceable resolutions of the UN Security Council on the elimination of terrorism such as S/RES/2253 (2015), A/62/L.48, S/RES/2255 (2015)… 3
The language of the aforementioned violations are not only grave violations of fundamental human rights, but also the violation of Jus Cogens in international law.
Therefore the international accountability of the Saudi government in committing, supporting and guiding acts of terrorism is evident and according to article 2 of the Draft Articles on the Responsibility of States for Internationally Wrongful Acts, which is deemed an international custom, is a clear example of an international crime which results in a serious of international crimes.
The state sponsored terrorism activities of Saudi Arabia includes important contents from the International Accountability of State which at the very least calls for the entry and intervention of the Security Council, the Human Rights Council and the attention of the ICC prosecutor.
Now the primary and inherent duty of these international bodies, is the serious entry into the subject of Saudi international crimes and state sponsored terrorism, and ignoring this is deemed equal to a historic, security and legal about turn in front of all of Mankind.
The Security Council which according to Chapter 7 of the UN Charter has on several times condemned acts of terror, and calls all to suppress terrorism and cooperate with the committees that fight terrorism, is now faced with a huge volume of the fundamental violation of human rights in the world.
Meanwhile, we must not ignore the role of other countries in helping the committing of these international crimes by the Saudi government. Western countries, Britain and the United States in particular who are currently generous towards the huge sales of conventional and unconventional weapons to the Saudi government, while in other similar instances such as Iran, they scrutinise and show sensitivity in the transfer of dual purpose goods.4
These issues do not cover its international responsibility and facilitate the commission of a violent act and international crimes, and with certainty it is responsible towards the international community both from the treaty aspects and also the spirit of human rights principles
The best reaction in this sensitive time is to draw the attention of international bodies to do the inherent duties and move towards the objectives of the United Nations, which is to respect Mankind at any time, and any place; perhaps those who pursue the establishment of power oriented doctrine, instead of human oriented doctrine, from the Second World War till now, be committed to international values and principles and not to use international laws as tools to consolidate power.
By: Hossein Mousavifar
1. http://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/middleeast/saudi-arabia-threatens-to-sell-off-us-assets-if-congress-passes-911-bill-a6987281.html . https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2016/07/15/us/document-september-11-28-pages.html
28 Pages of the 2002 Congressional Inquiry into Sept. 11 Attacks. Congress released the so-called “28 pages” on Friday that discuss the possible involvement of Saudi Arabia in the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001. The pages have been withheld since the conclusion in 2002 of a congressional inquiry into the attacks. JULY 15, 2016
2. Saudi Arabia to increase the stock of its military hardware, accounting for 7% of the world’s arms imports: http://www.worldatlas.com/articles/world-s-largest-importers-of-military-arms.html
3. For more information: Counter-Terrorism Committee : https://www.un.org/en/sc/ctc/resources/res-sc.html
4. See: S/RES/2231 (2015) Procurement Working Group JCOPA
The views expressed in this article are the author's opinion and do not necessarily reflect the views of the ODVV.