UN blacklists Saudi Arabia for killing hundreds of children in Yemen

The United Nations has blacklisted Saudi Arabia-led military coalition for killing or injuring 683 children in war-torn Yemen.

The Saudi-led military group was involved in 38 verified attacks on schools and hospitals in 2016, the UN said.

UN secretary-general Antonio Guterres spoke with Saudi King Salman by phone on Wednesday. UN spokesman Stephane Dujarric said: “They had a very positive discussion on issues of mutual interest, including the situation in the Middle East and beyond.”

This is while council members such as the United States, the United Kingdom and France have been supporting the Saudi war against the Arab world’s poorest nation by selling it weapons and providing it with logistical and advisory support.

Yemen has been devastated by more than two years of civil war in which President Abd-Rabu Mansour Hadi’s government, backed by the Saudi-led coalition, is fighting to drive the Houthis fighters out of cities.

More than 10,000 people have been killed and the conflict has ruined the economy and pushed millions to the brink of famine.

The UN annual report on children in armed conflict noted, however, that the coalition had “put in places measures during the reporting period to improve the protection of children”.

The blacklist also names Yemen government forces, pro-government militia and al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula for violations against children in 2016 – as it did in last year’s report.


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