A UN human rights body has called on Saudi Arabia to end airstrikes in Yemen and start ensuring the perpetrators of attacks on children are brought to justice.
The latest UN report from a 15-strong panel in Geneva found that since March 2015 at least 1,248 children have been killed and the same number injured, amounting to about 20% of the total deaths and injury since the war began.
The report condemns “the dramatic consequences for civilians, and particularly for children who are being killed, maimed, orphaned, and traumatised, of military operations, aggravated by an aerial and naval blockade that has rendered many millions of people, including a high proportion of children, food insecure”.
It says the independent assessments undertaken by Saudis of their air raids are “insufficiently independent, lack detail and have no mechanism for enforcement”.
The panel said: “There has been no case, let alone a case involving child casualties, recruitment or use of children in armed hostilities, where its investigations led to prosecutions and/or disciplinary sanctions imposed upon individuals, including military officials.”
All allegations of unlawful attacks on children should be pursued effectively and the perpetrators brought to justice with appropriate sanctions, in order to prevent and fight against impunity, they added.