Saudi-led coalition blocks United Nations aid flight carrying journalists to Yemen

Kristen Gonzales
July 21, 2017

At least seven women and four children were among those killed, they said.

More than two years of war between the Saudi-led coalition and the armed Iran-aligned Houthi group has claimed more than 10,000 lives in Yemen.

The UN Refugee Agency said it was "saddened and shocked" by the deaths in the Mawzaa district.

Earlier, the officials said the family was fleeing from the fighting raging in the province.

The UN's reporting also came as the Saudi-led coalition blocked a flight destined for Yemen's capital because worldwide journalists were aboard, according to Reuters.

The UNHCR has said that this attack "demonstrates the extreme danger facing civilians in Yemen, particularly those attempting to flee violence".

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Judges found that the Saudi-led coalition was "not deliberately targeting civilians" and alleged massacres were under investigation, concluding that it had not been established that there was "a clear risk that the items might be used in the commission of a serious violation of global humanitarian law".

Those killed in the airstrike were among the more than two million internally displaced Yemenis "who have fled elsewhere across Yemen since the beginning of the conflict, but continue to be exposed to danger as the conflict has affected all of Yemen's mainland governorates", the United Nations. It accuses the rebels of using civilians as human shields.

The coalition has admitted responsibility for some strikes that killed civilians, including a raid on the rebel-held capital Sanaa in October 2016 that killed more than 140 people at a funeral ceremony. "UNHCR, as the lead agency for protection under the coordinated humanitarian response in Yemen, has been appealing to parties to the conflict to ensure their utmost in the protection of civilians and the mitigation of suffering".

The coalition has imposed an air embargo on areas controlled by Huthi rebels and their allies, former troops loyal to ex-president Ali Abdullah Saleh - including Sanaa.

Campaigners in the West have urged countries including the United States and Britain to suspend arms exports to Saudi Arabia over civilian casualties in the conflict.

Other reports by TheSundaySentinel

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