Saudi-led coalition claims deadly Yemen attack

Charlene Craig
August 10, 2018

"(The air strikes) conformed to global and humanitarian laws", the coalition statement said, quoting spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki.

Yemenis helps a wounded child after being injured in an alleged Saudi-led airstrike, at a hospital in the northern province of Saada.

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".

An AFP photographer at the scene said the bus carrying the children had been turned into a mass of twisted metal, and that the remains of victims and their personal items were scattered across the ground.

UN Secretary-General António Guterres on Thursday condemned the air strike and called for an "independent and prompt investigation", his spokesperson said.

Both the United Nations chief and the US State Department called for investigations into the strike.

"Today's attack in Saada was a legitimate military operation. and was carried out in accordance with global humanitarian law", the Arabic-language coalition statement said, quoting spokesman Colonel Turki al-Malki.

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In March 2015 Saudi Arabia and other Arab states intervened on against the Houthis, and are continuing to do so.

The children were reportedly on a field trip, when their bus was hit by an airstrike.

Most of the children were inside the bus when the airstrike hit, according to a medic, Yahya al-Hadi.

"Putting children in harm's way is horrific and deplorable and making them pay such a price is unacceptable", said Hodeib. Houthi backed television stations broadcast footage of young children receiving treatment in local hospitals. "Causalities from today's attack continue to arrive", the Red Cross stated on August 9.

The missile was sacked from Amran province in northern Yemen on Wednesday night, the coalition said in a statement published by the Saudi Press Agency.

In July, a Badr 1 missile was sacked at Jizan Economic City, where Saudi Aramco is building a 400,000-barrel-per-day refinery.

The Houthis have in recent months ramped up missile attacks against Saudi Arabia, which Riyadh usually says it intercepts.

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Col. Turki al-Malki, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition, said the attack in Saada targeted the rebels who had fired a missile at the kingdom's south, killing one person and wounding 11 others.

"Our support to the coalition consists of aerial refueling and intelligence support to assist our partners in securing their borders from cross-border attacks from the Houthis".

The U.S. said it was not involved in Thursday's assault.

"It is beyond cruel; innocent children's lives have been lost".

Impoverished Yemen, on the southern tip of the Arabian Peninsula, is now in the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with more than 22.2 million people in need of assistance.

Nearly 10,000 people - two-thirds of them civilians - have been killed and 55,000 others injured in the fighting, according to the United Nations.

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