SAM: The Bombing of Marib and the Saudi Abha Airport by the Houthi Militia is a War Crime.
  • 12/02/2021
    SAM |


    Geneva - SAM Organization for Rights and Liberties said that the Houthis continued targeting of the civilians in the city of Marib with ballistic missiles and Katyusha rockets, in addition to bombing civilian objects and vital places, including Abha airport, is a full-fledged war crime and a flagrant violation of the Geneva Conventions, stressing that these attacks greatly undermine the peace efforts led by the UN envoy, the European Union and the United States of America.

    In a statement issued today, Thursday, the international organization confirmed that the Houthi militia had launched more than 115 ballistic missiles during the war in Yemen, in addition to 140 Katyusha rockets, which killed about 255 civilians, including 25 children, 12 women, and injured more than 445 civilians. Among them, 47 children and 10 women, and damaged agricultural lands and residential neighborhoods crowded with hundreds of civilians, expressing their fear that these operations are part of the widespread reprisal practices carried out by the Houthi militia against civilians with the aim of causing terror and chaos in the city in order to control it.

    SAM indicated that the last of these attacks was on November 8 and 9, 2020, when Houthi militia targeted residential neighborhoods with 6 ballistic missiles and Katyusha, one of which targeted the house of the governor of Marib, located in the government complex in the city center, wounding four relatives of the governor, in addition to the fall of two Katyusha rockets on the outskirts of the city.

    The organization warned that the bombing and threatening of Marib expose millions of civilians to real disaster and famine, in light of the continuing deterioration of the humanitarian situation, the poor performance of international programs due to the lack of funding, and the donors’ failure to abide by their pledges, as Marib accommodates more than 90 camps and IDPs centers, and warns, if continues, of serious human rights violations, such as blowing up of houses, field executions, arbitrary detentions, and enforced disappearances, motivated by revenge

    SAM stresses that the indiscriminate bombing of the city and the intensification of the attack on the city of Marib threatens the lives of more than 315,434 displaced families, including 965,111 children, and 429,368 women, pointing out that the bombing operations impede the delivery of humanitarian aid to the displaced, stressing the danger threatening IDPs there, which may push them to flee again from  Marib which was one of the safe havens that Yemenis move to, for temporary stability and the protection.

    In addition, SAM said that the Houthi forces' continuous targeting of Abha airport, which is located in the south of the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia, and deliberately inflicting material damages, the last of which was the injury of a civilian aircraft, is a serious violation of the laws of war that guaranteed special protection for civilian places and objects, of which the airport is one of them. Emphasizing that these practices also violate a set of legal rules, especially the Geneva Conventions and the additional protocols, and leaders who intentionally order targeting of civilian targets are committing war crimes.

    SAM called on the international parties, led by the United Nations, the Security Council and the European Union, to immediately intervene and stop the unjustified practices of the Houthi forces, stressing the need for those parties to work to maintain peace opportunities that diminish in light of the continuing violations and attacks by the militia. SAM also called for the necessity to ensure that Marib Governorate remains a safe haven spared from any battles, stressing the importance of preserving the relative stability in this governorate, which has provided many Yemenis to practice their lives normally, and gave them the ability to provide opportunities for survival.


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