Nine wounded in airstrike on MSF clinic in Yemen

Amsterdam, Dec 3 (IANS) Nine people were injured in an airstrike carried out by the Saudi-led coalition that hit a clinic in southern Yemen run by Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) — the international medical organisation Doctors Without Borders, a statement said.

According to sources, three airstrikes on Wednesday targeted a park in Taiz city’s Al Houban district, two km from MSF’s clinic. The MSF team immediately evacuated the clinic and informed the Saudi-led coalition that their jet planes were mounting an attack nearby. The clinic itself came under attack.

The wounded, two of them with critical injuries, were transferred to Al Qaidah and Al Resalah hospitals. MSF supports both hospitals in treating war-wounded patients, the statement added.

“I was in MSF’s mother and child hospital in Taiz… when we heard the airstrikes,” says Nora Echaibi, MSF’s medical team leader in Taiz. “Everyone was scared. We evacuated the teams as soon as possible.”

MSF’s team in Taiz is currently supporting Yemeni medical staff in providing emergency treatment to people wounded in the airstrikes.

At MSF’s tented clinic in Al Houban, staff provided urgent medical care to people displaced from their homes by the recent conflict.

“The health structures GPS coordinates were regularly shared with the Saudi-led coalition, most recently on 29 November, when we informed them about this specific activity in Al Houban,” says Jerome Alin, MSF’s head of mission in Yemen.

MSF has been providing those hospitals in Taiz that are still functioning with emergency medications, surgical supplies and practical support since May 2015. An MSF team has been providing urgent medical care at its clinic in Al Houban for the past two months. In the past two days, the team treated 480 patients in Al Houban.

“The bombing of civilians and hospitals is a violation of international humanitarian law,” says Alin. “Civilians seeking healthcare and medical facilities must be respected.”

Alin added: “An MSF supported hospital was as well hit by airstrikes in Haydan District in Saada Province and completely destroyed last month.”

MSF teams are working in eight Yemeni governorates.

Leave a Reply