Saudi ‘regrets’ airstrike on funeral that claimed 142 lives, but doesn’t take responsibility

Published October 11th, 2016 - 12:00 GMT
Yemeni mourners carry the coffin of Abdel Qader Hilal, the mayor of the capital Sanaa, on October 10, 2016 after he was killed in an air strike on a funeral in the Yemeni capital three days ago. (AFP/Mohammed Huwais)
Yemeni mourners carry the coffin of Abdel Qader Hilal, the mayor of the capital Sanaa, on October 10, 2016 after he was killed in an air strike on a funeral in the Yemeni capital three days ago. (AFP/Mohammed Huwais)

Saudi Arabia has said it "regretted" an air strike on a funeral in the Yemeni capital Sanaa that killed 142 mourners.

However, the kingdom stopped short of admitting it carried out the attack.

Saturday’s carnage, one of the deadliest since the Saudi-led coalition began military operations in March 2015, brought a terse response from the United States and the UN.

UN secretary general Ban Ki Moon made the following statement:
“Saturday’s funeral bombing was a heartless attack on civilians and an outrageous violation of international humanitarian law.Initial reports from the site indicate that this too was a coalition attack. Excuses ring hollow given the pattern of violence throughout the conflict. Parties cannot hide behind the fog of this war.”

The Houthi rebel group backed by Iran, which the Saudi’s are trying to remove, retaliated by firing a missile at the Taif military air base some 40 km from the holy city of Mecca.

In Sanaa people took to the streets to demand an international inquiry into the attack.

The Saudis have lunched a coalition probe.


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