Airstrikes hit two markets in Yemen; more than 100 people killed

and Contact Reporter

More than 100 people were killed in airstrikes that hit two markets in Yemen on Monday, according to witnesses and officials, as a Saudi Arabian-led coalition continued aerial attacks against Houthi rebels for a fourth month.

Many civilians were among the dead, according to a spokesman for the Health Ministry in Sana, the capital. Health officials broadcast radio and television messages urging citizens to donate blood as hospitals tended to the injured.

One airstrike occurred midday Monday at a popular livestock market in suburban Fayoush, about nine miles north of the southern port of Aden.

At least 50 people were reported killed, with many bodies burned beyond recognition and strewn among dead livestock, according to witnesses and medical officials. Dozens were injured.

A car carrying fighters loyal to the Houthis had arrived at the market to make a purchase shortly before the attack, and at least six Houthi fighters were killed in the strike, witnesses said.

The second strike happened about 11 p.m. at a market in the area of Joub, north of Sana, and killed more than 60 people, according to the Houthi-run Defense Ministry.

Khalid Mahlah of Sana wondered when the world would call for an end to the airstrikes.

“It is a shame on all the international [community] that they have given in and remain silent,” Mahlah said in an interview.

More than 3,000 people, half of them civilians, have been killed and 14,000 more wounded since airstrikes began March 25, according to the United Nations, as the conflict has deepened into an alarming humanitarian crisis in the Arab world’s poorest country.

More than 1 million Yemenis have fled their homes, and 13 million have poor access to food, according to the United Nations. The organization has called the conflict a “humanitarian catastrophe” and is seeking a cease-fire until at least the end of the Muslim holy month of Ramadan in mid-July.

The Shiite Muslim rebels took over Sana in September, and the stated goal of the Saudi-led coalition’s airstrikes has been to restore to power exiled President Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi.

Previous air bombardments have struck Houthi positions and weapons caches but also residential areas and historic sites. The coalition has not acknowledged the killing of civilians and has accused the Houthis of using civilians as human shields.

Airstrikes on Monday also hit other parts of Yemen, including an area of Aden where seven people were killed, officials said. One strike hit a Houthi political office in a heavily populated area of Sana, injuring several people.

Special correspondent al-Alayaa reported from Sana, and staff writer Pearce from Los Angeles.

Copyright © 2016, Los Angeles Times

UPDATE

7:45 p.m.: This story has been updated throughout.

This story was first published at 11:34 a.m. 

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