HRW Confirms Saudi Arabia Used Cluster Rockets in Yemen

BUBAI– Saudi Arabia-led coalition forces appear to have used cluster rockets in at least seven attacks in Yemen’s northwestern Hajja governorate, killing and wounding dozens of civilians, Human Rights Watch (HRW) said yesterday. The attacks were carried out between late April and mid-July 2015.

According to the HRW website, cluster munitions caused civilian casualties when civilians picked up unexploded sub munitions that detonated.

Coalition forces should immediately stop using cluster munitions due to the inevitable harm they cause to civilians, Human Rights Watch said. The United Nations Human Rights Council should create a commission of inquiry to investigate serious laws-of-war violations in Yemen.

“The loss of civilian life in Hajja shows why most countries have made a commitment never to use cluster munitions,” said Ole Solvang, senior emergencies researcher. “These weapons not only kill or injure people at the time of attack, but the unexploded sub munitions go on killing long afterward.”

Since March 26, a coalition of nine Arab countries has carried out a military campaign against Yemen killing and wounding thousands of Yemenis and destroying a large part of the infrastructure in the country.