A newly-conducted study has found that the vast amounts of arms sold with minimal oversight to Middle Eastern and North African states by the UK and other western nations have increased corruption, spread extremism and destabilized the region.
The study lists 17 nations across Middle East and North Africa (MENA) in which defense budgets are being ramped up and more weapons are being poured in from willing western nations.
It also warns that unless the nations selling arms take responsibility they will end up exacerbating future conflicts in an already destabilized region.
“This is one of the most unstable and conflict riven regions in the world,” Katherine Dixon, head of Transparency International’s Defense and Security Program which published the study.
Saudi Arabia, a close ally of the UK, increased its military expenditure by 17 percent between 2010 and 2015, making it the biggest market for arms in the region.