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6 dead as Saudi jets pound northern Yemen with cluster bombs

US Rep. Ilhan Omar (D-MN) (L) talks with Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) during a rally with fellow Democrats before voting on H.R. 1, or the People Act, on the East Steps of the US Capitol on March 08, 2019 in Washington, DC. (AFP photo)
Two BLU-108 canisters, one with two skeet (sub-munitions) still attached, are seen in the al-Amar area of al-Safra in Sa’ada province, northern Yemen, after an attack on April 27, 2015.

At least six civilians have lost their lives and several others sustained injuries when Saudi fighter jets carried out fresh aerial attacks against residential areas in northern Yemen, using internationally-banned cluster bombs.

Local sources, speaking on condition of anonymity, said five people were killed and ten others injured when Saudi military aircraft struck the al-Barkah area of the northwestern Yemeni province of Sa'ada, located 240 kilometers north of the capital Sana'a, on Friday afternoon, Arabic-language al-Masirah television network reported.

Saudi jets also launched a morning cluster bomb raid in the Hayran district of the northwestern province of Hajjah, located approximately 130 kilometers northwest of Sana’a, killing at least one person and injuring seven others.

Cluster bombs are banned under the Convention on Cluster Munitions (CCM), an international treaty that addresses the humanitarian consequences and unacceptable harm caused to civilians by cluster munitions through a categorical prohibition and a framework for action.

Moreover, Saudi aircraft bombarded an area in the Mustaba district of the same Yemeni province, with no immediate reports of casualties and the extent of damage caused.

Saudi jets pounded the city of Sirwah, which lies about 120 kilometers east of Sana’a, as well, though no reports of casualties were available.

Yemenis mourn over the body of a victim of a Saudi air raid that hit a funeral reception in the Arhab district, located 40 kilometers north of the capital Sana’a, on February 16, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

Elsewhere in the Nihm district of Sa’ada province, Yemeni soldiers and fighters from Popular Committees launched a BM-27 Uragan rocket at a gathering of militiamen loyal to resigned Yemeni president Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi, leaving scores of the Saudi mercenaries dead and injured.

Yemeni forces and their allies also targeted Kofel military camp in the country’s central province of Ma'rib, with no casualties among Saudi-sponsored militiamen immediately reported.

Yemeni forces, allies take two southwestern Yemen areas

Additionally, Yemeni troopers and Popular Committees fighters have taken control of two areas in the southwestern province of Dhamar.

Local sources told Arabic-language al-Omanaa news website that the forces have completely retaken Sharm al-Ali and Kamat al-Dokhan areas in the Utmah district of the province.

The development came as Yemeni fighters are pushing deeper along the Sharm al-Safel area in the same district, tightening the noose around Saudi-sponsored militiamen led by Abdul Wahhab Muawwizah.

Yemeni soldiers and their allies managed to drive Saudi mercenaries out of Rabi'ah Bani Bahr in Dhamar Province late Thursday night.

The United Nations humanitarian coordinator for Yemen, Jamie McGoldrick, says the Saudi campaign has claimed the lives of 10,000 Yemenis and left 40,000 others wounded.

Earlier this year, McGoldrick told reporters in Sana’a that the figure was based on casualty counts given by health facilities and that the actual number might be higher.

Yemeni men check the site of a Saudi air raid that hit a funeral reception in the Arhab district, located 40 kilometers north of the capital Sana’a, on February 16, 2017. (Photo by AFP)

In a report released on February 23, Yemen’s Legal Center for Rights and Development, an independent monitoring group, put the civilian death toll in the war-torn Arab country at 12,041.

The fatalities, it said, comprise 2,568 children and 1,870 women.

The rights body said the bombings have also wounded 20,001 civilians, including 2,354 children and 1,960 women, while more than four million others have been displaced.

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