Yemen schoolchildren killed by unexploded ordnance: UN

The vast number of landmines continues to pose a threat to the lives of Yemeni people. (File/AFP)
Updated 05 April 2019
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Yemen schoolchildren killed by unexploded ordnance: UN

  • Children often fall victim to unexploded ordnance, failing to fully appreciate the dangers
  • The vast number of landmines continues to pose a threat to the lives of Yemeni people

DUBAI: Two children were killed and eight critically wounded when an unexploded bomb went off at a school in the Houthi-held Yemeni capital, the UN children's agency said on Friday.
A child had found the bomb and brought it to Al-Fatah school in the Hamdan district of Sanaa on Wednesday to show friends, UNICEF said in a statement.
The casualties were aged between 12 and 14.
Children often fall victim to unexploded ordnance, failing to fully appreciate the dangers.
"It is highly likely, as we've seen in Syria, Iraq and elsewhere, that children will continue to be killed even when there's a lull in violence or the violence comes to an end," said UNICEF's regional chief of communications, Juliette Touma.

The Saudi Project for Landmine Clearance (MASAM) in Yemen extracted 14 anti-personnel mines, 625 anti-vehicle mines, 67 explosive devices and 665 unexploded ordnance — totaling 1,371 mines — during three weeks of February.
A total of 44,743 mines have been extracted since the beginning of the project. An estimated 1 million mines have been planted by the Iranian-backed Houthi militias in Yemen over the past three years claiming hundreds of civilian lives.
MASAM aims to dismantle mines in Yemen to protect civilians and ensure that urgent humanitarian supplies are delivered safely. Houthis are developing anti-vehicle mines and turning them into antipersonnel explosives to intimidate and terrorize civilians.
The vast number of landmines continues to pose a threat to the lives of Yemeni people.


UK to send third warship HMS Duncan to Gulf

Updated 1 min 8 sec ago
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UK to send third warship HMS Duncan to Gulf

LONDON: Britain will send a third Royal Navy warship to the Gulf, the defense ministry announced Tuesday, while insisting that it did not “reflect an escalation” of tensions with Iran in the region.
Britain has already sent the HMS Duncan, an air defense destroyer, to cover for frigate HMS Montrose while it undergoes maintenance in nearby Bahrain, and will also send frigate HMS Kent “later this year.”
Reports said it would head to the Gulf in mid-September.
HMS Montrose last week warned off three Iranian gunboats that UK officials said were trying to “impede” the progress of a British supertanker through the Strait of Hormuz in the Gulf.
The defense ministry said the HMS Kent would be “taking over” from HMS Duncan, but added that an “occasional overlap of ships when one deployment begins and another ends... is not uncommon,” suggesting that all three could be in the region at some point.
The ministry said the deployments were “long-planned” to ensure “an unbroken presence” in the crucial waterway and “do not reflect an escalation in the UK posture in the region.”
Iranian officials have denied last Wednesday’s incident in the Strait of Hormuz ever happened.
The British government has in any case raised the alert level for ships traveling through Iranian waters to three on a three-point scale, indicating a “critical” threat.
HMS Duncan is an air defense destroyer that carries a set of heavy Harpoon anti-ship missiles and has a company and crew in excess of 280.
Tensions have been escalating in the region for weeks, with US President Donald Trump last month calling off at the last minute an air strike on Iran over its downing of a US spy drone.
The Strait of Hormuz episode occurred a week after UK Royal Marines helped the Gibraltar authorities detain an Iranian tanker that US officials believe was trying to deliver oil to Syria in violation of separate sets of EU and US sanctions.
Iran has bristled at the arrest and issued a series of increasingly ominous warnings to both the United States and Britain about its right to take unspecified actions in reprisal.
British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt sought to ease tensions on Monday by saying the tanker would be released if Tehran guaranteed it was not heading to Syria.