NGOs urge France to ban arm sales to Saudi Arabia

Twelve Yemeni and international human rights organizations called on France to stop selling arms to Saudi Arabia and do more to end the war in Yemen

The call was issued Thursday in Paris to mark the fourth anniversary of the intervention of a Saudi Arabia-led coalition in neighboring Yemen.

Organizations including Amnesty International, Action against Hunger and Doctors of the World urged France to use its key position as president this month of the U.N. security council and as head of the Group of Seven developed countries this year.

France is the third largest arms exporter to Saudi Arabia after the United States and Britain. French authorities argue the country has strict rules on arms exports.

Yemen's civil war, which erupted in 2014, pits Houthi rebels against the Saudi-backed government.