Saudi airstrikes kill at least 34 civilians in Hodeida, Yemen

HODEIDA , Yemen, Sept. 23 (UPI) — At least 34 people died in Saudi-led airstrikes on a Hodeida, Yemen, neighborhood, the Yemeni Defense Ministry said.

Another 55 were injured, 14 homes were destroyed and 90 more were damaged in the attack Wednesday on a residential area of the Red Sea port city. Houthi rebels occupying the city’s presidential palace may have been the intended target, reported.

September has been the most severe month for casualties in the 18-month-long civil war. At least 64 civilians died last week when Saudi airstrikes hit well-diggers on a farm outside the capital, Sana. Seventeen more died by airstrikes in Yemen’s Saada region and 31 civilians, including nine children, were killed when bombs struck homes in Saada and Hajjah.

“On average, at least 200 Saudi airstrikes attack Yemen daily but that increases to hundreds more when Saudi escalates its attacks on Yemen, and that’s when civilian targets pay the price of Saudi aggression,” said Sharaf Luqman, spokesman for the Houthi-run Defense Ministry.

A Saudi-led coalition of Arab countries began a military campaign in March 2015 to oust Iran-allied Houthi rebels loyal to deposed president Ali Abdullah Saleh from power. The United Nations reported at least 10,000 people have died in fighting, and 1.5 million children are acutely malnourished.

Since 2009, the United States has sold more than $115 in arms and ammunition to Saudi Arabia, and is involved in the fight in Yemen, helping Saudi Arabia with midair refueling of its aircraft and with providing limited intelligence.The Washington Post reported this week that Saudi Arabia appears to be using highly incendiary white phosphorus munitions, supplied by the United States, in the Yemen bombings.

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