On 26th March 2015, the Saudi led coalition inflamed what was already a difficult situation in Yemen by apparently launching airstrikes on the Houthi fighters, but from day 1 they commenced the way they were to continue, by killing civilians.
We are now in the 9th month of almost constant bombardment in which thousands of civilians have been buried in their own homes, in addition to civilian infrastructure and buildings being targeted daily, including hospitals, market places, schools, mosques, water tanks, food supplies, power stations, public transport, libraries and internationally protected places of heritage.
There have been numerous reports and warnings from organisations such as Human Rights Watch, Amnesty International and Oxfam that war crimes are being committed. They call on the West, in particular the USA and the UK, to stop supporting this war and providing weapons to Saudi Arabia who are in clear violation of international law. In addition there have been calls for an independent inquiry into potential war crimes on all sides, which was blocked by Saudi Arabia's negotiations on the UN's Human Rights Council.
As the crisis worsens, and Yemenis feel desperation as the world continues to ignore what is rapidly turning into a full blown genocide, as hospitals shut down and the country slips into a state of famine, a group of activists, both in and out of Yemen, decided to document the war crimes taking place.
So far we have listed 101 war crimes from the Saudi led airstrikes, drawing on evidence previously documented by organisations such as HRW and Amnesty. We have also added video clips from news agencies and corresponding reports from human rights organisations based within Yemen, as well as some statements from witnesses on the ground. You can see all here YemenWarCrimes.blogspot.com
These are just a fraction of the total crimes taking place, we have a long backlog of crimes to add and will continue to document the best we can with our limited resources, until this war is brought to an end and these crimes are properly investigated by an independent international commission of inquiry. We acknowledge that there are other crimes taking place by all parties, in addition to the airstrikes, but at the moment we cannot keep up with the airstrikes alone, and since these are what are causing by far the greatest number of civilian casualties, this project currently focuses on these.
Today we take a pause to remember the thousands that have died so far, and ask you to help us raise awareness of this project.
Here's how you can help:
Please have a read through this blog and have a look through some of the incidents listed in the War Crimes Diary. Please note the evidence is graphic, we are sorry we don't mean to upset people but we do have to present the evidence in full for these acts to be believed and investigated.
Please choose one incident - any 1 from any date (we want people to choose different incidents). Then send some tweets about your chose incident with link for people to read more, using the tag #101WarCrimes
There's also some wonderful graphics on this page by Yemeni graphic designer @A7medJa7af that are on this page that you may also copy (click on image to enlargen then right click to save the image) to use in your tweets to help raise awareness about the project. Please don't just retweet my tweets - we need you to send your own tweets for the message to travel further.
You may wish to direct some of your tweets to politicians in the West to call on them to end their support for this war, to stop the supply of weapons to Saudi Arabia and to call for an independent inquiry into war crimes.
Thank-you for all of your ongoing support.