Amnesty International, with the help of several EFAD members, has mapped out the ways in which Germany, The Netherlands, The United Kingdom and Italy are aiding the United States in its controversial drone program. The new report, titled “Deadly Assistance, The role of European states in US Drone Strikes“, shows how these states can potentially be held responsible for violations of international law.
The support provided by European states varies from sharing intelligence used to track and target people for drone-strikes, facilitating the infrastructure for communications and transmission of information between drone-operators and their drones, and/or providing a base from where the armed drones take off.
The report comes at a crucial time, as the Trump administration is reportedly set to ease the regulations regarding the export drones to other countries, has expanded the US drone programme, and has weakened rules and procedures that govern the use of drone strikes.
The drone strikes are also carried out in secrecy, wich is preventing victims from holding states accountable for their violations of international law. The same veil of secrecy is making it ‘difficult to establish what safeguards – if any – the European states have in place to ensure they are not assisting in unlawful drone strikes.’