The U.S. has hailed the announcement from the Arab Coalition to Restore the Legitimacy in Yemen that it will review rules of engagement, hold those at fault accountable and compensate victims of last month’s airstrike that targeted a bus, following intelligence reports indicating the vehicle was carrying Houthi leaders, but killed civilians instead.
“The United States regards the Saudi-led Coalition’s announcement … as an important first step toward full transparency and accountability,” Heather Nauert, spokesperson of the U.S. State Department, said in a statement.
“We continue to call on all sides to abide by the Law of Armed Conflict, to mitigate harm to civilians and civilian infrastructure, and thoroughly investigate and ensure accountability for any violations. It is imperative that all parties work toward a comprehensive political solution to avoid further harm to the Yemeni people.”
Mansour Ahmed Al-Mansour, the legal adviser to the Joint Incidents Assessment Team (JIAT), earlier said that while the Saada strike was based on intelligence, the delays in executing the strike and receiving a no-strike order must be investigated.
“The team believes that the coalition forces should immediately review the application of their rules of engagement to ensure compliance...” Al-Mansour said.
The coalition’s Joint Forces Command has expressed regret over the mistake and accepted the JIAT’s results and findings, reaffirmed its commitment to international humanitarian laws and pledged to continue “applying the rules of engagement in accordance with the highest international standards and practices, which will guarantee respect of the law and the preservation of civilian lives and possessions.”
Meanwhile, the reiterated its full support for Martin Griffiths, the U.N. Special Envoy for Yemen, who is preparing to convene warring factions in Geneva for a first round of consultations to end conflict in the war-torn country.
“We fully support U.N. Special Envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths as he prepares to convene parties in Geneva. All sides must engage constructively and in good faith in order to work toward a secure, stable, and peaceful Yemen,” Nauert said a statement.
This article has been adapted from its original source.
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