Saudi royal air force kills Yemeni school children

This video says about itself:

Saudi bombs unlawfully targeting Yemen schools – Amnesty

12 December 2015

Saudi Arabian airstrikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen have deliberately targeted schools, killing students and making education impossible for many children, a new report from Amnesty International suggests.

Published on Friday, the report claims 34 percent of Yemeni children have not been to school since the conflict began in March. Some 1.8 million children in the country do no attend school, and many have been killed in airstrikes supposedly targeting rebels.

During the nine month conflict, 5,000 people have died and 27,500 have been injured. The war has also devastated Yemen’s infrastructure, with hospitals and roads destroyed, making humanitarian aid difficult to deliver.

In the report, titled ‘Our kids are bombed: schools under attack in Yemen’, Amnesty investigated five airstrikes which took place between August and October 2015 in Hodeidah, Hajjah and Sana, and appear to have targeted schools.

Amnesty says the strikes were unlawful because they targeted civilian objects and “disproportionately harmed civilians and civilian objects in relation to the concrete and direct military advantage anticipated from the attack,” as well as failing “to distinguish between civilian objects and military objectives.”

Five people were killed and 14 injured in the strikes, as well as disrupting the education of 6,550 Yemeni children.

Amnesty says UK and US companies are complicit in the illegality of the airstrikes as both countries sell weapons to Saudi Arabia.

“Under Article 6 of the Arms Trade Treaty (ATT), which came into force in late 2014, a country is prohibited from authorizing an arms transfer if it has knowledge at the time of authorization that the arms would be used in the commission of attacks directed against civilian objects or civilians protected as such, or other war crimes as defined by international agreements to which it is a Party,” the report warns.

Lama Fakih, Senior Crisis Advisor at Amnesty International, said airstrikes against schools are depriving Yemeni children of a normal life and the right to education.

“Schools are central to civilian life, they are meant to offer a safe space for children. Yemen’s young school pupils are being forced to pay the price for these attacks. On top of enduring a bitter conflict, they face longer term upheaval and disruption to their education – a potentially lifelong burden that they will be forced to shoulder.”

Andrew Smith from Campaign Against the Arms Trade (CAAT) told RT the UK must stop trading arms to Saudi Arabia to prevent further incidents occurring where civilians are killed.

“This is another sign that the UK’s arms export system is broken. For decades the UK has focused on pouring arms into the Middle East and one of the results of that is the humanitarian catastrophe being unleashed on Yemen,” he said.

“The UK needs to end arms sales to Saudi and revoke all licenses for arms that are being used in Yemen. By continuing to arm and support the Saudi bombardment the UK is complicit in the destruction taking place,” he added.


From MSF/Doctors Without Borders:

Yemen: At least 10 children killed and three wounded while walking back home from school in Taiz

21 January 2016

Testimony by Michele Trainiti, MSF project coordinator in Taiz, Yemen.

“We arrived to Al Hurair area, in Al Houban quarter in Taiz town on Tuesday 19 January after receiving a call from a contact in the area, saying that an airstrike had affected children and a teacher and they need our support in treating the wounded people.”

“We rushed to the area, which was near the frontlines that surround Taiz city, to provide medical assistance to the wounded people. According to two mothers of the two wounded girls and some other bystanders, 10 children and one teacher died and three injured in the attack … Apparently the kids were walking back home from school when the airstrike took place.”

“One mother said, the children were coming back from school when they passed by a tank and they heard the whistle of a bomb coming. There was a big explosion and the kids were pushed up in the air. Aisha, my daughter can’t remember anything after that.”

“The area is a dangerous frontline with heavy and continuous clashes. When we arrived, we saw that it’s an empty land that has no constructions on it. We only saw a burning tank and few destroyed notebooks on the ground and papers everywhere. People in the area said the wounded children were transported to Al Rufai hospital.”

“On our way to the hospital we found two families on a motorbike with two injured girls discharged by the hospital and on their way home. The kids were still covered in blood; they had shrapnel wounds from the blast. They were in pain and one of them was in a clear state of shock. We discussed with the family, and found out that the children did not receive tetanus vaccines, therefore we decided to refer the two wounded girls to the MSF mother and child hospital in Taiz.”

“The wounded girls spent the night in our hospital for observation and today we decided to refer them to a Gulf hospital that has good surgical services because Aisha (13 years old) has a foot fracture and is in need of a surgical intervention to stop the continuous bleeding in her left leg, while Ashjan (7 years old) has a large foreign body in her knee that appeared to have entered via her upper posterior thigh and needed surgical removal. Both mothers are very anxious and worried about their children’s status.” Another sad example of how civilians are caught in the middle of this ongoing indiscriminate war.

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