Statement from the Norwegian Refugee Council’s acting country director in Yemen, Suze van Meegen:
“We are appalled by conflict that appears entirely ungoverned by the laws of war and astounded at the silence of the many governments enabling it. We cannot comprehend any possible moral justification for killing civilians fleeing to safety as their towns become battlegrounds.
Attacks on civilians have become a deadly trend in Yemen’s war. The new media reports of civilian casualties follow recent coalition strikes on a busload of school children that killed 51 people, and over three years of ceaseless violence from both parties to the conflict on homes, markets, hospitals, schools and farms. More than 350,000 Yemeni people have fled violence along Yemen’s west coast since the beginning of June, adding to the three million displaced through the course of the war. People forced to flee are not simply numbers, they are individuals forced to leave everything they have behind in an effort to stay alive.
This war is not only a Yemeni problem, it is a global one. The multiple nations supplying intelligence, arms and logistical support to enable the violence are implicated in a conflict that has killed thousands and will not subside without conscious and meaningful action.
The UK, US, France, Iran and all others contributing to the conflict in Yemen must use their influence to bring about an immediate and permanent end to the violence. We call on the countries funding and fuelling the war to ensure that civilians and civilian infrastructure are protected from attack, and that humanitarian aid is allowed to reach those who need it.”