At least 74 children have been killed and 44 maimed in Yemen since a Saudi-led Gulf coalition launched airstrikes in the conflict-hit country late last month, UNICEF said in a statement Monday.
A boy sits at the site of an airstrike near Sanaa Airport, March 26. Khaled Abdullah Ali Al Mahdi / Reuters
The United Nations’ Children’s Fund said that those figures are likely to be conservative, as fighting has intensified since the airstrikes began on March 26.
The bloodied shirt of a victim at the rubble of houses in Okash village, near Sanaa, April 4. Mohamed Al-sayaghi / Reuters
In total, more than 540 people had been killed and some 1,700 wounded in Yemen between March 19 and April 6, according to the World Health Organization.
Boys hold shrapnel amid debris in Okash village near Sanaa, April 4. Mohamed Al-sayaghi / Reuters
Speaking from Jordan, UNICEF Yemen representative Julien Harneis said: “Children are paying an intolerable price for this conflict.”
People gather at the site of an airstrike at a residential area near Sanaa Airport, March 26. Khaled Abdullah Ali Al Mahdi / Reuters
Harneis added: “They are being killed, maimed and forced to flee their homes, their health threatened and their education interrupted. These children should be immediately afforded special respect and protection by all parties to the conflict.”
A boy walks past the rubble of destroyed houses in the village of Bani Matar, which is west of Sanaa, on April 4. Mohammed Huwais / Getty Images
UNICEF’s Dr. Gamila Hibatullah, based in Aden, described the humanitarian situation as “very dangerous.”
Yemenis stand amid the rubble of houses near Sanaa, April 4. Hani Mohammed / AP
The organization said 100,000 people had been displaced, hospitals were overflowing, and water supplies broken, increasing the risk of disease.
Soldiers and Houthi fighters inspect the damage caused by airstrikes on the airport of Yemen’s northwestern city of Saada, March 30. Stringer / Reuters
UNICEF’s statement came before airstrikes aiming for a military base in Ibb province hit a school. Officials in the governor’s office and Houthi leaders told CNN six had been injured, while other reports said there have been at least two fatalities.
Smoke and flames rise following air strikes on Faj Attan Hill and Aser Mountain near Sanaa, April 6.Mohammed Huwais / Getty Images
On Tuesday, an International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) spokeswoman described the humanitarian situation in the main southern city of Aden as “catastrophic,” AFP reported.
Boys stand on a tank burned during clashes on a street in Yemen’s southern port city of Aden, March 29. Stringer . / Reuters
On Tuesday morning, the ICRC director of operations tweeted that the group’s first aid flight had landed in the Yemeni capital, Sanaa.