Both sides are firing the explosives responsible for Yemen's climbing death toll
Both Houthis' use of rockets and Saudi's months-long bombing campaign play a role in a death toll that's not slowing down in Yemen. (AFP/File)
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Last week, the UN Office for Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA) released three reports showing the billowing number of civilian deaths in Yemen, Ukraine and Libya.
The greatest threat to civilians in Yemen is explosives, the report suggests, but they're not only talking about Saudi airstrikes.
Yemen, as you probably know, has been under air bombardment from the Saudi-led coalition against Shia Houthis rebels since March. Houthi positions may have been weakened, but make no mistake—civilians are bearing the brunt of this conflict.
Between Saudi's US-made cluster munitions and widespread bombing across residential areas in the capital Sanaa, Saudi strikes are at least partially responsible for a death toll that's spiraling out of control—OCHA September tallied over 2,000 civilian deaths and almost 5,000 injuries since March.
But the report also found the widespread use of rudimentary rockets and mortar fire by militants in Yemen's southern provinces have weighed heavily and for a longer period of time.
The UN agency counted over 5,000 deaths in the country from January-July, 86 percent of which were civilians. And Yemen was not even technically at war yet during two month of that time period—reminding us that for civilians, the trouble didn't start in March.
Here's OCHA's chart of its findings, via Twitter. You can read the full report here.
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