US arms used in 'unlawful' Yemen strikes

Human Rights Watch says Saudi-led coalition used US weapons in two strikes that killed dozens of civilians

US arms used in 'unlawful' Yemen strikes

World Bulletin / News Desk

U.S.-supplied arms were used by a Saudi Arabia-led coalition to carry out two "apparently unlawful airstrikes" in Yemen earlier this year, Human Rights Watch said Thursday.

Three separate airstrikes in September and October killed several dozen civilians, the group said, noting that U.S. munitions were used in two that separately targeted a water drilling site and a security administration building.

The Saudi coalition's actions "puts the US at risk of complicity in unlawful attacks", Human Rights Watch said.

It said a bomb that was used in one of the attacks was delivered to Saudi Arabia "well into the conflict", which began in March 2015.

The rights group urged foreign governments to suspend all arms sales to Saudi Arabia, and called for the United Nations to send additional investigators to Yemen amid the ongoing conflict there.

“Saudi-led forces are bombing civilians in Yemen with newly supplied US weapons," Priyanka Motaparthy, senior emergencies researcher at Human Rights Watch, said in a statement.

"The Obama administration is running out of time to completely suspend US arms sales to Saudi Arabia or be forever linked to Yemen wartime atrocities,” she added.

The group said it found remnants from U.S.-supplied arms at the site of 23 airstrikes "including more than a dozen attacks involving US-made cluster munitions" since the Saudi-led campaign began.

Earlier this year the Obama administration suspended sales of cluster munitions to Saudi Arabia amid concerns about the campaign. In October, the administration initiated a review of arms sales to Saudi Arabia after its coalition appeared to carry out an airstrike on a funeral hall where Houthi rebel leaders had gathered.

No decision on a full pause has been made.

The White House responded to the report by emphasizing that a review is ongoing, and the U.S. "continues to have grave concerns about coalition strikes that have resulted in civilian casualties."

Spokesman Josh Earnest said the U.S. would push the coalition to reduce errors.

"We will continue to press the Saudi-led coalition to remediate the flaws in its targeting cycle and take other immediate steps to mitigate against future civilian casualties," he said, noting that the U.S. would continue to support Saudi efforts to ensure its "territorial integrity".

Last Mod: 09 Aralık 2016, 09:39
Add Comment