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The U.N. says the U.S.-backed Saudi coalition is committing war crimes in Yemen

Published: August 30, 2018
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A U.N. report published Tuesday claims that all sides involved in the conflict in Yemen have committed war crimes — singling out the U.S.-backed Saudi coalition as the worst offender.

The 41-page document alleges that forces loyal to the Yemeni government, their Saudi-led backers and the rebel Houthi movement have all failed to minimize civilian casualties.

The U.N.-appointed panel accused the Saudi-led coalition of perpetrating the main attacks against civilians.

“Coalition air strikes have caused most of the documented civilian casualties,” the report said. “In the past three years, such air strikes have hit residential areas, markets, funerals, weddings, detention facilities, civilian boats and even medical facilities.”

Just this month more than 50 children have been killed in coalition airstrikes, with at least 29 dying after a missile hit a school bus. Even though many of the victims were under the age of 10, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition said the airstrikes “conformed to international and humanitarian laws.”

The U.S. and U.K. provide intelligence, logistical and arms support to the alliance of Sunni Muslim Arab nations led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates. The report did not specifically mention the U.S., U.K., or Iran, which is backing the Houthi rebel forces, however in a thinly veiled criticism it called on the international community to “refrain from providing arms that could be used in the conflict.”

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Related:

Yemen: United Nations Experts point to possible war crimes by parties to the conflict [ohchr.org]

UN Probe Says Repeated Bombing of Yemen Civilians by US-Backed Saudi Coalition Likely Amounts to War Crimes [commondreams.org]

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