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Saudi airstrikes kill 68 civilians in Yemen on a single day – UN

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Nearly 70 civilians were killed on a single day within this week in airstrikes conducted by Saudi Arabia across war-ravaged Yemen, the UN’s Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights (OHCHR) said in a report on Thursday.

Airstrikes on a popular market in Yemen’s south-western province of Taiz on Tuesday killed at least 54 civilians, including eight children and injured 42 others.

Also Tuesday, an airstrike on a farm in the western province of Hodeida killed 14 people from the same family,’’ the UN said.

Saudi Arabia has been leading an air campaign against Iran-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen for more than two years.

“These incidents prove the complete disregard for human life that all parties, including the Saudi-led coalition continue to show in this absurd war that has only resulted in the destruction of the country.

“It shows the incommensurate suffering of its people, who are being punished as part of a futile military campaign by both sides,” Jamie McGoldrick, the UN humanitarian coordinator for Yemen said.

Yemen, one of the Arab world’s poorest countries, has been locked in a devastating power struggle between the Saudi-backed government and the Houthis.

The conflict intensified in March 2015, when the Houthis advanced on the government’s temporary capital of Aden, prompting Saudi Arabia and Sunni allies to start an air campaign against the Shiite group.

Saudi Arabia fears that the rebels will give its regional rival, Shiite Iran, a strategic foothold on the Arabian Peninsula.