WEAPONS TRANSFERRED TO THE SAUDI-LED COALITION AND EMPLOYED IN THE CONFLICT IN YEMEN (2015-ongoing)
|WEAPON NAME||MK80 General Purpose Bombs|
The MK80 bomb serie list four bombs, ranging from the 113 kg Mk 81 to the 907 kg Mk 84. The Mk 80 series of bombs was developed in the late 1940s, and remains in service today; low-drag, general-purpose aircraft bombs contain 89 kg of high explosive. Originally dropped as an unguided bomb (sometimes referred to as an ‘iron’ or ‘dumb’ bomb), early versions were only able to hit their target 5.5% of the time, requiring large numbers of bombs to be dropped. → characterisationexplosiveweapons.org
RWM Italy (subsidiary of Rheinmetall), Domus Nova, Sardinia, ITALY → rheinmetall-defence.com/rwm_italia
Rheinmetall's Italian subsidiary, RWM Italia, produces bombs that are exported to Saudi Arabia and used to bomb Yemen. During the two-year period of 2012 to 2013, RWM Italia issued export licenses for MK82 and MK83 aerial bombs intended to be exported to Saudi Arabia, for a total value of over €86 million. However, it is impossible to know how many and which bombs were exported from Italy to Saudi Arabia in the last two years. The reports submitted to the Parliament indicate only the total value of export licenses to individual countries and generic description of the weapons (ammunition, land vehicles, ships, aircraft, etc.). It is reported that in 2015 RWM Italia was issued 24 licenses for a total value of over €28 million, but the countries of destination are not listed. In the two-year period 2014-15, the Ministry of Foreign Affairs has authorized the export to Saudi Arabia of a military arsenal for a total value of nearly €420 million. These include “automatic weapons” that can be used for internal repression; “ammunition;” “bombs, torpedoes, rockets and missiles;” “target acquiring equipment;” “explosives;” “aircraft,” including components for the Eurofighter “Al Salam,” the Tornado “Al Yamamah” and the EH-101 helicopters; “electronic equipment” and “specialized equipment for military training.” During this two-year period, military systems and materials for more than €478 million were delivered to the Saudi Royal Armed Forces.
On 31 July 2019, as a response to the pressure of civil society organisations and critical shareholders, the Italian government has decided to suspend RWM Italia’s export licensed to Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates for 18 months. On 12 September RWM Italia has declared that, following the decision of the Italian government, it will cut 160 jobs (out of 200) in its plant of Domusnovas, in Sardinia, where the bombs are produced. An area with high unemployment where the dismissed workers will find it difficult to find new jobs.
|IDENTIFICATION||Suspension lug found in the aftermath of an air strikes launched by the coalition led by Saudi Arabia in Deir Al-Hajari, Yemen (Oct. 8, 2016)|
|GEOLOCATION||Deir Al-Hajari, al-Hudaydah, Yemen → 14°45'36"N 43°8'25"E|