This morning, May 5th, 2017, 53 Israeli Human Rights activists submitted a petition to the supreme court in Jerusalem (3684/17) demanding a criminal investigation for assistance to the carrying out of crimes against humanity and war crimes, against Israeli arm dealers who exported assault rifles to South Sudan, and against the Israeli ministry of defense and foreign affairs officials who authorized this export.
The petition was submitted after a UN Security Council report revealed this arms sale. In 2013 a deal mediated by the head of South Sudan National Security Service, by-passing the official South Sudanese proceedings for arms procurement, included the sales of Galil Ace assault rifles from Israel, that were then given to Mathiang Anyoor – the governmental run militia.
They trained in the private farm of the president of South Sudan outside Juba. The guns were used by Mathiang Anyoor for the massacre of people from the Nuer tribe in December 2013 in Juba – a massacre that marked the beginning of the civil war in South Sudan.
Officials in the Israeli ministry of defense and foreign affairs should have known in advance the risk they are taking authorizing such a dodgy deal, exporting assault rifles, through the head of South Sudan National Security Service, for a militia trained in the president’s farm.
Is there an employee in the ministry of defense who finds it reasonable to arm a president of a country on the brink of civil war in a “private deal” for his own private militia?
Did this process not through the governmental channels seem reasonable and innocent to the officials of the Israeli ministry of defense and foreign affairs?
The crisis in South Sudan did not start on December 15th 2013, but long before. During that period the European Union instituted an arms embargo on the country. The mere fact of enlisting and training a private militia such as Mathiang Anyoor should have raised red flags, and be one more reason to prevent sales to the country at large, and to the president’s private militia specifically.
Since January 2016, we petitioned the Israel state attorney and the chief prosecutor demanding an investigation, but unfortunately, they ignored this, while we are now receiving reports that Mathiang Anyoor are involved in ethnic cleansing and crimes against humanity in the South and Center of South Sudan.
As the Israeli arms are still in possession of Mathiang Anyoor, we can only assume that Israeli weapons will be used once more in a genocide (like in the genocide in Rwanda and in Guatemala).
The petition (in Hebrew)