A Yemeni man checks the site of a Saudi air raid that hit a funeral reception in the Arhab District north of the capital Sana’a on February 16, 2017. (Photo by AFP)
Human Rights Watch says Saudi Arabia
’s relentless airstrikes have pushed Yemen
into a “deep humanitarian catastrophe.”
The rights group’s communications and advocacy director for the Middle East
& North Africa, Ahmed Benchemsi, made the remarks during an interview with RT on Sunday.
“More than 3 million people have been displaced in Yemen and more than 80 percent are relying on some form of humanitarian aid.” Yemen has the highest rate of child malnutrition in the world now and it is estimated that one in five persons are in severe food insecurity.”
He went on to note that the humanitarian situation in the country is becoming “increasingly unsustainable”, while stressing that killing civilians is a direct violation of the laws of war.
“We ourselves, at Human Rights Watch, were able to document 61 apparent unlawful airstrikes, all conducted by the coalition, some of which may amount indeed to war crimes and that have killed nearly 900 civilians and have hit civilian areas, including markets, schools, hospitals and private homes,” he said.
Benchemsi also called on Britain, the US, and France to halt their weapons sales to Riyadh so that it reduce its airstrikes on Yemen.
Saudi Arabia has been pounding Yemen since March 2015. Over 12,000 have died since the onset of the invasion, which was launched in an unsuccessful attempt to bring Yemen’s former Riyadh-allied government back to power.