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Labour Party bars Saudi representatives from attending party conference

Labour Party bars Saudi representatives from attending party conference

A United Kingdom (UK) Labour Party spokesperson said the party had turned down an application from the Saudi embassy to attend the party's annual conference in Brighton, HuffPost reported on Monday.

"Following evidence of war crimes committed by Saudi Arabia in its bombing campaign in Yemen and other large scale human rights abuses, the NEC agreed that the embassy’s application to attend the Labour Party conference would not be accepted," the spokesperson said.

Representatives from Sudan were also apparently barred from attending the conference, according to a letter to all MPs written by the League of Arab States in London, which announced the cancellation of a reception and dinner event that was to be held by Arab ambassadors.

"Our Council has decided to refrain from attending the Labour Party Conference this year due to the rejection of both the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia's and the Republic of Sudan's applications to attend the conference," the letter said.

The conference will begin next Sunday on Sept 24.

The Labour Party is a vocal opponent of the arms assistance the UK provides to Saudi Arabia in the ongoing war in Yemen.

A Saudi-led coalition that supports the government against the Houthi rebels has wreaked havoc over the country; food sources have become scarce and situation is worsening with the "worst cholera epidemic in the world" that, according to a United Nations' official, is "entirely man-made".

In an interview to BBC, Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn criticised the UK government for assisting Saudi Arabia in the war while providing aid to Yemen.

"We should not be doing both," he said, adding that a "political process" should be started to "bring about a ceasefire" in Yemen.

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