Sunday, 10 May 2015

10th May, Saudi led coalition airstrikes target Old Market in Saada Yemen

On 10th May (approximately) Saudi led airstrikes destroyed the Old Market in Saada. This is the Human Rights Watch report of this plus a few incidents that happened to other markets, a religious building and other shops:

Old Market

Ali al-Hashhoush, a shopkeeper in the Old Market located in the center of Saada City, told Human Rights Watch that he was at home, a short walk from his shop, when he heard two loud explosions around midnight. About 10 minutes later he heard a third explosion, and about 10 minutes after that, a fourth. After the fourth, he heard a plane overhead. He said:

I ran towards the noise, and saw the market in ruins. I saw one man with a piece of metal in his neck, his leg was almost cut off from the explosion and half of his left hand had been sliced off. I ran past him to the second man. He was an older man that I knew well, very poor, who used to sleep in the market. I picked him up so he could be driven to the hospital – blood was pouring out of his head, down his chest. He died hours later. I saw a third man, but I am not sure what happened to him. Others carried him out of the rubble and he was also wounded.

The strike likely occurred on May 10.

Human Rights Watch reviewed satellite imagery recorded in the morning of May 19 and identified a large zone of complete destruction, approximately 30 by 40 meters in size, within the Old Market resulting from impact of one and possibly more air-dropped munitions. Human Rights Watch found no evidence of any military objective in the immediate area.

Human Rights Watch also visited the ruins of the central market located next to the Religious Endowments Ministry. Satellite imagery shows that two attacks struck the market in the period April 7-14, one attack struck on April 14-15, and at least one attack struck in the period May 4-10. According to two men who had shops there, one of the strikes, probably the one on April 14-15, killed a shopkeeper.

The two shopkeepers said another strike hit the building of the Religious Endowments Ministry, which also housed a restaurant, juice shop, and small grocery store, on the night between May 9 and 10. No one was wounded in the strike because it happened at night, they said

rubble of shops near Religious Endowments Ministry
Two owners dig through the rubble of their shops near the Religious Endowments Ministry that were destroyed by an aerial attack on May 9 or 10, 2015. © 2015 Ole Solvang/Human Rights Watch

Satellite imagery also shows the destruction of the Othman Mujali Market in the southern part of Saada City. The main market building was destroyed between April 15 and May 2. At least eight aerial bombs were dropped on the remaining market buildings and the adjacent financial building. According to Al-Jumhouri hospital records, the strikes killed two civilians and wounded nine.

Ansar Allah officials told Human Rights Watch that airstrikes had damaged three other markets on the outskirts of the city, the agricultural products market, al-Khafji Market, and Talh market.

Targeting Saada: Unlawful Coalition Airstrikes on Saada City in Yemen
June 30, 2015 Human Rights Watch

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