Court hears case on Germany’s role in US drone deaths in Yemen

An appeal has begun in the case of three Yemenis suing the German government for complicity in the death of family members killed in US drone strikes. Ramstein Air Base in Germany is integral to the US drone program.

In his opening statement Thursday, the presiding judge, Wolf Sarnighausen, said that the Higher Administrative Court in Münster was faced with a daunting and massive task. One that neither the German Constitutional Court nor the Federal Administrative Court had yet tackled.

The case of bin Ali Jaber vs. Germany, which opened today, seeks to force the German government to admit shared responsibility in the killing of two of the plaintiffs’ family members in Yemen in 2012. Furthermore, the plaintiffs are calling on Germany to prohibit the United States from using its Ramstein Air Base in its global drone war.

More… Drones and diplomacy: US Ramstein air base stirs controversy in Germany

Command, click, kill? Weaponized drones are highly controversial in Germany. Two cases involving fatal drone attacks carried out by the United States are being brought before Germany’s Higher Administrative Court in Münster.

Three Yemenis have taken legal action against the German government, as has one Somali. The plaintiffs claim to have relatives who lost their lives as a direct result of the deployment of US drones in their home countries.

The attacks are said to have been carried out via the Ramstein US military base in the state of Rhineland-Palentine, which is why the injured parties are suing the German government for being partially responsible.