Tuesday, 23 October, 2018

Yemen war: Children killed in Saudi-led air strike on bus

Saudi air defense intercepts, destroys Houthi missile launched at Jizan One dead, several wounded after Saudi Arabia 'intercepts Yemen missile'
Pablo Mccormick | 09 August, 2018, 17:08

It accused the Houthis of using children as human shields.

The bus had been travelling through a busy market in Dahyan district, northern Saada, at the time of the raid, which Houthi rebels' Al Masirah TV reported killed 39 and wounded 51, "mostly children".

The coalition denied responsibility for those attacks.

In a message on Twitter, the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) in Yemen said a hospital it supports had received dozens of casualties.

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Houthi media broadcast gruesome footage appearing to show the dead bodies of children. Most of the missiles have been intercepted by the Saudi military.

"Shrapnel from the intercepted missile scattered over residential areas, leaving a Yemeni resident killed and 11 other civilians wounded", the coalition said.

Saudi Arabia and Sunni Muslim allies intervened in Yemen's war in 2015 against the Houthis, who control the most populous areas of Yemen, including the capital Sanaa, and drove the internationally recognised government into exile in 2014.

It was not immediately clear whether the bus was the target of the air strike, but coalition spokesman Col Turki al-Malki said the attack was "a legitimate military action, conducted in conformity with worldwide humanitarian law".

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The ICRC stressed that "under worldwide humanitarian law, civilians must be protected during conflict", while the secretary-general of the Norwegian Refugee Council Jan Egeland called it a "grotesque, shameful" attack that showed "blatant disregard for rules of war".

A health department spokesperson said the death toll stood at 43, with 61 wounded.

Saada, the main stronghold of the Houthis, has mainly come under air strikes from the coalition as the mountainous province makes battles hard for pro-government ground troops.

Yemen's war has left almost 10,000 people dead since 2015 and unleashed what the United Nations describes as the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

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