The Rights Radar (RR) organization for human rights in Arab World strongly condemned the targeting of civilians in the area of Faj Attan in the Yemeni capital Sana’a by the Saudi-led coalition forces, as well as the killing of civilians in the city of Taiz by the forces of Houthi group and former president Ali Abdullah Saleh.
RR said in a press statement that “The killing of civilians is a war crime that does not subject to statute of limitations”. “Saudi-led Arab coalition and Houthi- Saleh forces must bear their legal and moral responsibility, abide by rules of engagement and laws of war and avoid targeting civilians” the statement added.
Eyewitnesses informed RR that 3 air raids by Arab coalition forces bombed 2 houses in the area of Faj Attan, south of the capital Sanaa, on Friday morning, 25 August 2017, killing at least 15 civilians, including women and children.
The spokesman of the Saudi-led Arab coalition forces Colonel Turki al-Maliki acknowledged that the coalition forces were behind the air strike last Friday morning in the area of Faj Attan in Sanaa. He justified this incident by saying that “this incident was caused by a technical error, which led to the unfortunate incident and the alleged indirect targeting of said house”.
RR sources have monitored more than 70 attacks on civilian targets in Yemen by Saudi-led Arab coalition air raids since the start of its operations in Yemen on March 26, 2015, causing hundreds of civilian deaths and thousands of injuries in Sana’a, Saada, Marib, Hodeidah, in which it is repeated and unjustified attacks and some of which are war crimes.
On the other hand, eyewitnesses told Rights Radar that 2 artillery shells by Houthi-Saleh forces targeted a crowded public market in Bir Pasha neighborhood, west of Taiz city, on Sunday, 27 August 2017, killing at least 4 civilians, and wounded about 10 others.
The Houthi-Saleh forces admitted the deliberate killing of civilians in the city of Taiz on Sunday and described them as (mercenaries).
The spokesman of the armed forces of the Houthis and Saleh, Brigadier General Sharaf Ghaleb Luqman said that “the artillery of the army and the Popular Committees (Houthi and Saleh forces) targeted on Sunday concentrations of mercenaries of the Saudi-American aggression in the area of Bir Pasha in Taiz province”. Pointing out that they “were targeted by artillery shelling gatherings of mercenaries in the area of Bir Pasha, and there were deaths and injuries among them”.
Thousands of civilians killed and tens of thousands injured by Houthi-Saleh forces in the provinces of Taiz, Aden, Amran, Ibb, Hodeidah, Baidah, Hajjah and other Yemeni governorates since the end of 2014, some of them in mass killings amounting to war crimes.
RR demanded the Arab Coalition forces, as well as the Houthis – Saleh forces, that they must bear their legal and moral responsibilities during the war and abide by the principles of the international humanitarian law as well as the international human rights law. It stressed that their continuation of committing military operations against civilians in Yemen amounting to war crimes will subject them to a legal prosecution in the future.