Saudi-Led Coalition Airstrike on Yemeni Hospital Amounts to War Crime

A picture taken on April 7, 2016, shows heavily damaged buildings on a street in Yemen's third city Taez as a result of clashes between Shiite Huthi rebels and fighters from the Popular Resistance Committees, loyal to Yemen's fugitive President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi.

 

The airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition that hit a hospital in Yemen on Monday can be considered a war crime, Amnesty International Middle East and North Africa Program Deputy Director said in a statement.

 Amnesty International called for a thorough and independent probe into the attack.

“The bombardment of this hospital is a deplorable act that has cost civilian lives, including medical staff, who are dedicated to helping sick and injured people under some of the most challenging conditions,” Magdalena Mughrabi stated. “Deliberately targeting medical facilities is a serious violation of international humanitarian law which would amount to a war crime.”

The attack on the medical facility, run by the aid group Doctors Without Borders has reportedly left at least seven civilians dead and dozens injured.

“Today’s air strike appears to be the latest in a string of unlawful attacks targeting hospitals, highlighting an alarming pattern of disregard for civilian life,” Mughrabi noted.

Since 2014, Yemen has been gripped by the conflict between the Sunni government and the Shia Houthi rebel movement backed by some factions within the Yemeni army.

A Saudi-led coalition of mostly Persian Gulf countries has been carrying out airstrikes against the Houthis at the Yemeni government’s request.

MSF Claims It Shared Yemeni Hospital Coordinates With Saudi-Led Coalition

MSF medical personnel treat civilians injured after the US military bombed an Afghan hospital in Kunduz.

 

Doctors Without Borders, or MSF, repeatedly shared the coordinates of a hospital in Yemen with all parties in the conflict in in that country prior to the medical facility being hit by a Saudi-led coalition airstrike on Monday, the organization said on its official Twitter account.

WASHINGTON             Earlier in the day, an airstrike carried out by the Saudi-led coalition partially destroyed an MSF-supported hospital in Hajjah, Yemen. The blast killed nine people, including an MSF staff member, and two more patients died while being transported to Al Jamhouri hospital, according to the MSF.

The hospital had a 14-bed emergency room, a maternity ward and a surgery unit, it noted.

Yemen has been gripped in a conflict between the government and the Houthi rebel movement since 2014.

The Saudi-led coalition of mostly Persian Gulf countries has been carrying out airstrikes against the Houthis at the request of President Abd Rabbuh Mansour Hadi since March 2015.

The United Nations has recorded well over 3,200 civilian deaths in the conflict, 60 percent of which it has attributed to the Saudi-led coalition airstrikes.