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LOCAL authorities have invested £566 million of council workers’ pension funds into arms companies implicated in Saudi Arabia’s military offence in Yemen.
Council pension funds have sizeable shareholdings in BAE Systems, Airbus, Lockheed Martin, Raytheon and Northrop Grumman, the Guardian revealed.
Lothian (Edinburgh) council has the largest investment in the five companies and manages funds worth £7.8 billion for staff, including Edinburgh city council workers.
Campaign Against Arms Trade’s (CAAT) Andrew Smith said council employees’ retirement funds “should be invested in the public good, not in companies that profit from war and conflict.”
He added: “These aren’t just numbers on a spreadsheet, the weapons these companies are producing have had a devastating impact.”
The five companies are key suppliers to the Saudi military, which is conducting an ongoing campaign in Yemen.
An estimated 60,000 people have been killed since the war began in 2015 and the United Nations has warned that without action, the country could face the worst famine in the world for 100 years.
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