Thursday, May 6, 2021

Yemeni Families File Petition Against US Drone Killings | Human rights news

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Two families filed a petition against the US government for the “ unlawful ” murder of 34 relatives between 2013 and 2018.

Two Yemeni families have petitioned the US government for the “unlawful” murder of 34 relatives, including nine children, during counterterrorism operations between 2013 and 2018.

Human rights group Reprieve, submitted the petition to the Inter-American Commission on Human Rights on behalf of families on Tuesday, said the families suffered enormous loss of life and property during the process. six drone strikes and a special operations raid.

Of those killed, 34 were members of the Al-Ameri and Al-Taisy families, who are asking the commission to urge the US government to take immediate action to prevent further damage when reviewing cases – often a a long process that could take years.

“The seven attacks in question have been found to have resulted in the unlawful killing of at least 48 people, including 17 children, and serious injuries to at least seven others, as well as the destruction of their personal property and means of sustenance, ”said the petition seen by the AFP news agency.

The first strike, which took place in December 2013 under Barack Obama’s administration, targeted a convoy of wedding processions, killing at least 12 people, including seven members of the Al-Ameri family and five members of the Al-family. Taisy, according to the file. .

A local security official at the time told AFP that some of the dead were suspected members of Al Qaeda.

The Al-Ameri and Al-Taisy families deny any connection to the armed group.

The petition comes just days after US President Joe Biden took office and sheds light on America’s long campaign of bombing against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), on which the United States rarely comments.

‘Last resort’

Analysts say AQAP’s capabilities on the ground have declined significantly over the past decade, except for a brief resumption of activity amid the ongoing war between the internationally recognized Yemeni government and the rebels. Houthis aligned with Iran that erupted in 2014.

Since the 2013 incident, six more operations have been carried out, all under Donald Trump, in which the United States has stepped up its campaign in Yemen, according to data from the United States Central Command (CENTCOM) released by American media.

“What families expect from the commission is above all recognition of the harm that has been done to them,” Jennifer Gibson, lawyer at Reprieve, told AFP Thursday.

“They tried time and time again to get the Yemeni and US governments to stop the strikes, and yet they continued. The commission, for them, is a last resort in trying to present evidence to say “you are making a mistake, whatever you think we did, we didn’t, please stop the strikes”.

On Wednesday, the Biden administration took a fresh look at US policy in the Middle East.

US Secretary of State Antony Blinken has said his top priorities will be to tackle the civilian disaster in Yemen, where US ally Saudi Arabia has bombed Houthi rebels.

State Department said it is temporarily halting sales of arms authorized by Trump, including ammunition to Saudi Arabia and a $ 23 billion package of advanced F-35 planes to the United Arab Emirates .



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