HRW: UAE-backed Forces Detain Children in Yemen
The United Arab Emirates (UAE), Saudi Arabia, and various UAE and Saudi-backed Yemeni armed groups have arbitrarily detained people, including children, and committed forced disappearances, Human Rights Watch has learned.
In a statement issued on Tuesday, the human rights organisation accused UAE-backed forces in Yemen of being involved in serious human rights violations, including the arbitrary detention of minors.
“Instead of standing still amid the human suffering in Yemen, governments close to Saudi Arabia, the UAE, and the Houthis should pressure their allies to end their grave human rights abuses and establish accountability measures,” the statement said.
The UAE is a part of the Saudi-led coalition, which has been fighting the Iran-backed Houthi rebels in the civil war in Yemen since 2015. The proxy war has resulted in what the United Nations calls "the world's worst humanitarian crisis", with an estimated 24 million Yemenis in urgent need of aid. Save the Children estimated that 85,000 children under the age of five have starved to death as a result of the conflict so far. The UN has strongly condemned all parties to the conflict for blocking access to humanitarian aid and the use of starvation as a weapon of war.
Coalition forces have long been accused of committing war crimes in Yemen due to a series of indiscriminate attacks against hospitals, water facilities, markets, school buses and other civilian spaces.