Some 14 of the 17 largest Danish pension funds have invested a total of 1.13 billion kroner in companies that supply military equipment to Saudi Arabia, according to an investigation carried out by Information newspaper.
The Saudi kingdom is suspected of committing war crimes in Yemen, and the equipment may be similarly implicated.
The revelations come as part of the newspaper’s investigation into the largest Danish pension funds and their equity investments, which total 657 billion kroner.
Trine Christensen, the secretary general of Amnesty International, believes the investments are problematic.
“The pension funds should be able to see that it is about arms producers that continue to sell weapons unscrupulously to a country where there is a great risk that the weapons will be used for war crimes,” said Christensen.
In the ruins of air strikes on Yemen
The pension funds have invested in arms manufacturers that provide military equipment or services to Saudi Arabia, such as Raytheon and Rheinmetall.
Human rights organisations, including Amnesty International, have found remnants of bombs produced by Raytheon and Rheinmetall in the ruins of Yemen air strikes with civilian casualties. The Saudi coalition has been involved in more than 19,000 air strikes with major civilian casualties in Yemen since 2015.
Arms sales already banned
The Danish government suspended arms sales to Saudi this past November, but the pension funds’ investments undercut this policy.
Experts and politicians say EU arms sales to Saudi Arabia are a breach of EU rules and the UN Arms Trade Treaty.
PensionDanmark was the largest investor in the companies that supply Saudi military equipment with 243.8 million kroner, followed by Lægernes Pension (138.1) and Topdanmark (117.5).