The United Arab Emirates (UAE) on Tuesday accused Gulf rival Qatar of being behind a call for the International Criminal Court (ICC) to investigate allegations of war crimes by the UAE in Yemen.

A group calling itself the Arab Organisation for Human Rights in the United Kingdom said on Monday it was taking the UAE to the ICC over “indiscriminate attacks on civilians” in Yemen.

The UAE is part of a Saudi-led coalition battling Houthi rebels in Yemen.

UAE Minister of State for Foreign Affairs Anwar Gargash accused Qatar of being responsible.

“The Arab Organisation for Human Rights with its address in Qatar has filed a media complaint against the UAE to the International Criminal Court,” Gargash wrote on his Twitter account.

“People with knowledge are aware that this move aims to create noise, which is Qatar's favourite game,” he said.

The group, which says it is based in London, says the complaint was filed on Monday and also charges that the UAE has used banned cluster bombs and hired mercenaries to carry out torture and executions.

Officials at the Hague-based ICC could not be reached to confirm whether the complaint had been filed.

Such complaints are common, with some 10,000 received received since the court opened in 2002.

Saudi Arabia, the UAE, Bahrain and Egypt in June severed diplomatic ties with Qatar and imposed economic sanctions on the tiny gas-rich country.

The UAE is a key member of the Saudi-led coalition that has been fighting the Iran-backed Huthi rebels since 2015 after they captured the capital Sanaa and vast areas of northern Yemen.

The war has killed some 8,600 people, while a further 2,000 have died of cholera.



Updated 21 May, 2022

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