UN panel calls for inquiry over human rights abuses in Yemen

UN panel of experts asks UN Security Council to set up commission of inquiry to investigate human rights abuses in Yemen

Photo by: AFP
Photo by: AFP

Yemeni rescuers, including members of the Yemeni Red Crescent, search for victims under the rubble of the police headquarters after the building was struck overnight by Saudi-led air strikes on January 18, 2016.

A UN panel of experts said the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) should consider setting up an international commission of inquiry to investigate human rights violations committed by all sides in Yemen’s conflict.

According to the report released by the panel, the Saudi-led coalition targeting Houthi rebels in Yemen has carried out 119 strikes that violated humanitarian law.

The report also stated that many coalition strikes on civilian targets including refugee camps, buses, residential areas, mosques, markets and medical facilities were documented by the experts who studied satellite imagery of cities before and after assaults as they were not allowed to travel to Yemen.

"Many attacks involved multiple air strikes on multiple civilian objects," the report said.

In March 2015, Saudi Arabia set up a coalition to carry out air strikes against Houthi rebels in Yemen after Yemeni President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi was forced by the Houthis to flee his country and go into exile in the Saudi capital Riyadh.

Since then, Iranian-backed Houthi rebels have been battling with the coalition as the country has been facing an unprecedented humanitarian crisis.

According to the UN figures, almost 6,000 people have been killed in the ongoing civil war, nearly half of them civilians, and more than 27,000 wounded since March.

Currently, 80 percent of Yemen’s population is in desperate need of humanitarian aid to meet their basic needs or protect their fundamental rights, including security and safety of civilians and provision of essential services.

TRTWorld and agencies