28 July 2016
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    » 01/28/2016, 08.29

    YEMEN - SAUDI ARABIA - UNITED NATIONS

    Saudi-led coalition targeting civilians in Yemen, UN says



    The report notes that civilians were targeted in a "widespread and systematic" manner. People were also being deliberately starved as a war tactic over the past nine months. The panel of experts relied on satellite imagery and other sources of information because its members were not allowed to travel to Yemen.

    Sanaa (AsiaNews/Agencies) – The Saudi-led coalition fighting the Houthi rebel movement in Yemen has targeted civilians with air strikes in a "widespread and systematic" manner, a leaked UN report says. The UN panel of experts found that civilians were also being deliberately starved as a war tactic over the past nine months.

    The panel relied on satellite imagery and other sources of information because its members were not allowed to travel to Yemen. It called for an inquiry into human rights abuses. 

    Back in January, the country became embroiled in a bloody conflict between the Saudi-backed, Sunni-dominated government and Iran-supported Houthi Shia rebels. Since March, the Saudis have led of a coalition against the rebels, and launched air strikes against their positions. The coalition is attempting to oust the rebels from Yemen's capital, Sanaa, and restore the country's government.

    Saudi Arabia says the Houthis, who are allied with forces linked to Yemen's former president, are supported militarily by its regional rival Iran - something the latter denies.

    More than 5,800 people have been killed in fighting since March, and more than 80% of the population is in dire need of food, water and other aid, the UN says.

    The UN's experts documented 119 coalition sorties that violated international law, the report says, many of which involved multiple strikes on civilian objects.

    They also found that civilians fleeing coalition air strikes had been chased and shot at by helicopters.

    The new report follows intensifying concern over the deteriorating situation in Yemen.

    Earlier this month, Yemen's government briefly expelled the UN's human rights representative following reports that the Saudi-led coalition had been using cluster bombs.

    UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon warned at the time that the use of cluster bombs could amount to a war crime.

    Meanwhile, Dutch diplomats were forced to abandon a proposal in the UN Human Rights Council calling for an international fact finding mission to Yemen, reportedly under pressure from Saudi Arabia.

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    See also

    30/03/2016 09:18:00 YEMEN - SAUDI ARABIA
    UN: Saudi air raids in Yemen kill or maim six children every day

    According to the UN, the war has taken on "terrifying" proportions for the youngest. A third of the more than 3 thousand victims are under 18. In a year 10 thousand children have died due to lack of vaccines and cures. A further 320 thousand suffer severe malnutrition. They are also denied education, 1600 schools closed and 50 more have been targeted in attacks. 848 cases of children involved in the conflict.

     



    07/09/2004 SAUDI ARABIA
    A catacomb Church? Perhaps, but one that is alive and well . . . and universal

    Interview with Mgr Paul Hinder, Auxiliary Bishop of Arabia.



    16/04/2015 SAUDI ARABIA – YEMEN
    Saudi war in Yemen masks widening domestic tensions
    Saudi Arabia is using the conflict in Yemen to control domestic problems, especially social inequalities and religious sectarianism. However, whilst the royal family flaunts its wealth, some 20 per cent of the population lives in poverty. Many disgruntled young Saudis end up becoming "foreign fighters" for the Islamic state (IS). Some 15 per cent of the Saudi population is Shia, under the heavy thumb of the Sunni-dominated state. Afshin Shahi, director of the Centre for the Study of Political Islam and lecturer in International Relations and Middle East Politics at University of Bradford, provides the following lucid analysis.

    27/08/2015 YEMEN – SAUDI ARABIA
    Human Rights Watch slams Saudi-led coalition for using cluster bombs in Yemen
    Between April and July, the Saudis carried out at least seven attacks in which they employed such weapons with devastating effect. HRW calls for a stop to their use, urging the parties to the conflict to sign the treaty banning them. Meanwhile, joint Arab League regional force has been postponed under Saudi pressure.

    31/01/2006 Saudi Arabia - Iran
    UN to Saudi Arabia: An end to the execution of minors

    At least 126 people on death row for crimes committed while still minors.  Concern also for the execution of minors in Iran.





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