Sat, 05 Dec 2009
Human Rights Watch is calling on those fighting against Yemeni Houthis to take all necessary measures to spare civilian lives and ensure they receive humanitarian assistance.
James Ross, legal and policy director at Human Rights Watch said on Monday that “the escalating conflict in northern Yemen risks escalating civilian casualties,” calling on all sides to avoid harming civilians and ensuring the quick delivery of aid to the displaced.
Yemeni armed forces have been attacking Houthi fighters in northern Yemen since August. Saudi warplanes have also been bombing Yemeni villages belonging to Houthis since early November.
The conflict has resulted in civilian casualties and has displaced thousands of people. The laws of war require the parties in an armed conflict to take all feasible precautions to spare the civilian population and their properties.
Aid agencies have been trying to get permission to reach and help all civilians in need of assistance.
But security problems and restrictive Yemeni government policies have prevented the agencies from doing so. To make matters worse, Riyadh continues to forcibly return Yemenis who have fled to Saudi Arabia.