A new report from the United Nations accuses a coalition led by Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates of potentially committing war crimes in Yemen, The New York Times reports. Along with multiple airstrikes that have killed young children, United Nations investigators also note the coalition’s use of torture on detainees, the raping of civilians, and the use of “child soldiers as young as 8.” The coalition’s airstrikes were determined to have caused the “most civilian casualties,” and investigators found “little evidence” overall that the parties were working to “minimize civilian casualties.” The Houthis, who control Northern Yemen, were also singled out in the report for possible war crimes—specifically for “shelling civilians, torturing detainees, recruiting young children to fight and blocking access to humanitarian agencies.” “None have clean hands,” one of the experts, Charles Garraway, said. “Despite the severity of the situation, we continue to witness a total disregard of the suffering of the people of Yemen.” Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis defended U.S. support for the coalition. “We determined it was the right thing to do in defense of their own countries, but also to restore the rightful government there,’’ he said.
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