Saudi-Led Airstrikes Kill 109 Civilians In Yemen In 10 Days

GENEVA, Dec 28( Reuters) – A Saudi-led coalition opposing in Yemen has killed 109 the civilian population of air strikes in the past 10 days, including 54 people at a crowded sell and 14 each member of one family on a farm, the top U.N. bureaucrat in the two countries said on Thursday.

The fighting is futile and ridiculou, U.N. inhabitant coordinator Jamie McGoldrick said, in extraordinarily direct criticism of the campaign being waged by the coalition against the Iran-aligned Houthi movement.

The Saudi-led coalition, which is backed by the United States, Britain and others, denounced the charges, saying the information lacked credibility. McGoldrick appeared to be taking the Houthi side in the conflict, the Saudis said.

Citing initial reports from the U.N. human rights field office, a statement by McGoldrick said air strikes reached a crowded marketplace in the Al Hayma sub-district of Attazziah in Taiz governorate on Tuesday, killing 54 and injuring 32.

Eight of the dead and six of the injured were children, according to the reports.

On the same day, an air strike on a farm in Attohayta district of Hodeidah governorate killed 14, and air strikes elsewhere killed a further 41 civilians and injured 43 during the past 10 days.

“These occurrences demonstrate the complete ignore for human life that all parties, including the Saudi-led coalition, continue to show in this absurd struggle that has only just resulted in the destruction of the country and the incommensurate endure of its people, who are being penalized as part of a fruitless military campaign by both sides, ” McGoldrick said.

Under international law, the warring backs must spare civilians and civilian infrastructure, he added.

A spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition said he regretted the information that came in McGoldrick’s statement.

“This statement establishes a continuous state of doubt about the information and data used by the United Nations, and challenges its credibility, ” the coalition spokesman said in a statement carried by Saudi country news agency SPA.

“As the coalition spokesman denounce this biased stand, he maintains the need for the United Nations to review the existing mechanisms of humanitarian work and the jurisdiction of its employees working in Yemen and to observe their concert, ” SPA said, quoting the statement.

The United nations organization had not yet been up-to-date calculate of the death toll in Yemen. It said in August 2016 that according to medical middles at least 10,000 people had been killed.

The United nations organization says Yemen is the world’s worst humanitarian crisis, with about 8 million people on the verge of famine, a cholera epidemic that has infected 1 million persons, and economic collapse in what was already one of the Arab world’s poorest countries.

( Reporting by Tom Miles; Editing by Kevin Liffey, William Maclean, Larry King )

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