Saudi-led air strikes in Yemen kill dozens in a single day, including children


Two air strikes conducted by a Saudi-led coalition fighting in Yemen’s civil war have caused at least 68 civilian deaths, according to the BBC, which cites the United Nations as its source.

Humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick said there were two raids on Tuesday that resulted in dozens of deaths. The first raid occurred in the Taiz province, at a busy market, and left 54 people dead. The second occurred in the Hudaydah province, wherein 14 members of the same family were killed.

The Office of the UN High Commissioner for Human Rights has reported that eight children were among the 54 killed in Tuesday’s strike, which hit a “crowded popular market” in the al-Hayma sub-district of Taiz. An additional six children were among the 32 people injured in the attack.

The Taiz attack was the result of Houthi fighters attempting to squash a revolt by residents of al-Hayma, which was thwarted by blockading and shelling the area.

McGoldrick said the attacks showed a “complete disregard for human life” by all parties. According to McGoldrick, who said the mounting civilian casualties caused by “escalated and indiscriminate attacks” are disturbing.

The BBC reports:

More than 8,750 people have been killed and 50,000 injured since the Saudi-led coalition intervened in the conflict between forces loyal to Yemen’s government and the rebel Houthi movement in March 2015, according to the UN.

The fighting and a blockade by the coalition has also left 20.7 million people in need of humanitarian aid, created the world’s largest food security emergency, and led to a cholera outbreak that is thought to have killed 2,227 people since April.

McGoldrick said that in the past 10-days alone, there have been 109 deaths resulting from air strikes.

Human rights groups accuse the coalition of bombing markets, schools, hospitals and residential areas. Although the coalition has reportedly not commented on Tuesday’s incidents, the BBC reports that it has stated it does not deliberately target civilians. McGoldrick says Tuesday’s deaths prove them wrong.

“These incidents prove the complete disregard for human life that all parties, including the Saudi-led Coalition, continue to show in this absurd war that has only resulted in the destruction of the country and the incommensurate suffering of its people, who are being punished as part of a futile military campaign by both sides,” McGoldrick said. “As the conflict in which civilians have borne the brunt marks 1,000 days, I once again remind all parties that it has no military solution. There can only be a political solution.”

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