On 17 January 2016, the freelance Yemeni journalist Almigdad Mojalli was killed in an airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition in Jaref, a Houthi-controlled district in the outskirts of Sanaʽa. Mojalli had gone there, working for Voice of America (VOA), to interview survivors of air strikes in Jaref in which up to 21 civilians had been killed days earlier. Rory Peck Trust honored him as "key source of information for visiting journalists" in Yemen. Daniel Martin Varisco, President of the American Institute for Yemeni Studies and Research Professor at Qatar University, said in an obituary that Mojalli's work "was a voice documenting the humanitarian crisis that the world outside Yemen has largely ignored" and a voice that "has been silenced". RSF, CPJ, International Federation of Journalists (IFJ), Yemen Journalists' Syndicate (YJS) and UNESCO condemned Mojalli's death. UNESCO Director-General Irina Bokova and RSF reminded all the parties to the armed conflict in Yemen that they were required to respect and ensure the safety of all journalists by UN Security Council Resolution 2222, adopted in 2015, and by the Geneva Conventions.
NATO powers such as the United Kingdom and the United States support the Saudi Arabian-led intervention in Yemen primarily through arms sales and technical assistance. France had also made recent military sales to Saudi Arabia. MSF emergency coordinator Karline Kleijer called the US, France and the UK part of the Saudi-led coalition, which imposed the weapons embargo and blocked all ships from entering Yemen with supplies. Rights groups have criticized the countries for supplying arms, and accuse the coalition of using cluster munitions, which are banned in most countries. Oxfam pointed out that Germany, Iran, and Russia have also reportedly sold arms to the conflicting forces. Tariq Riebl, head of programmes in Yemen for Oxfam, said, "it's difficult to argue that a weapon sold to Saudi Arabia would not in some way be used in Yemen," or "if it's not used in Yemen it enables the country to use other weapons in Yemen." Amnesty International urged the US and the UK to stop supplying arms to Saudi Arabia and to the Saudi-led coalition. On August 3, 2019, a United Nations report said the US, UK and France may be complicit in committing war crimes in Yemen by selling weapons and providing support to the Saudi-led coalition which is using the deliberate starvation of civilians as a tactic of warfare. Arms sale by United Kingdom to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates in 2019 reportedly soared by £1bn, i.e. 300%, in comparison to the figures in 2018. Andrew Smith of the Campaign Against Arms Trade condemned the increase and criticized the UK arms industry of being dominated by human rights abusers and dictatorships. UK-made fighter jets have been accused of causing catastrophic damage in Yemen. According to a May 28, 2020 article by The New York Times, the Trump administration in January 2020 told lawmakers that it was planning to sell a cache of munitions to Saudi Arabia, despite the kingdom’s human rights record. Reportedly, the sale of the said $478 million, precision-guided missiles used in Yemen war to Saudi, and approval of licenses permitting Raytheon to expand manufacturing in Riyadh are objected by lawmakers in both, Democrats and Republican parties.More Info
Pakistan was called on by Saudi Arabia to join the coalition, but its parliament voted to maintain neutrality. On February 2016 Academi, the security firm withdraw from front-line duties in the Yemen campaing. Qatar was suspended from the coalition due to the 2017 Qatar diplomatic crisis. Morocco ended their participation in 2019 due to deterioration of Morocco–Saudi Arabia relations followed by United Arab Emirates in July 2019 amid possible tensions with Iran on the Persian Gulf and differences with Saudi Arabia. Sudan announced its decision to reduce troops commitment from 15,000 to 5,000 in early December 2019.More Info
In early May 2015, Human Rights Watch accused Saudi Arabia of using US-supplied cluster munitions on at least two occasions. The Saudi military acknowledged using CBU-105 bombs, but it claimed they were only employed against armoured vehicles and not in population centers. Yemeni security officials claimed that cluster bombs were dropped in a civilian area of the Western suburbs of the Yemeni capital Sanaa. In an earlier statement, Saudi Arabia had denied that the Saudi-led military coalition was using cluster bombs at all.More Info
On 8 January 2016, the UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon announced that Saudi coalition use of cluster munitions could be a war crime. HRW condemned the Saudi-led coalition for the attacks saying: "The coalition's repeated use of cluster bombs in the middle of a crowded city suggests an intent to harm civilians, which is a war crime. These outrageous attacks show that the coalition seems less concerned than ever about sparing civilians from war's horrors." A week later, Amnesty International published new evidence that appeared to confirm reports of coalition forces using US-made cluster munitions on Sanaʽa on 6 January 2016.More Info
Save the Children's Country Director in Yemen, Edward Santiago, said that the "indiscriminate attacks after the dropping of leaflets urging civilians to leave Sa'ada raises concerns about the possible pattern being established in breach of International Humanitarian Law. Warning civilians does not exonerate the coalition from their obligation to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure, and we have seen in the last days that the warnings have not been enough to spare civilian lives. At the same time, people are largely unable to flee for safety because of the de facto blockade imposed by the coalition leading to severe fuel shortages."More Info
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