Geneva/Sana'a- The International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) abhors the killing today of dozens of civilians in the Yemeni capital Sana'a - the result of several attacks on a wake following a funeral attended by hundreds of people.
"We deplore this outrageous loss of civilian life," said Robert Mardini, the ICRC's regional director for the Near and Middle East. "Civilians in Yemen have already paid far too heavy a price these past 18 months," added Mr Mardini.
This evening, paramedics on site were still recovering the bodies of the dead and attempting to rescue the wounded. Initial reports received by the ICRC indicate a very high number of casualties, which could rise still further.
"We are supporting hospitals and the health authorities to deal with the influx of dead and wounded. We have provided 300 dead body bags so far and dispatched a large quantity of medical supplies to three hospitals in Sana'a," said Mr Mardini.
The last couple of days have seen an intensification of airstrikes across the country, heightening suffering and leading to loss of civilian life.
As the humanitarian situation in Yemen grows ever more acute, the ICRC is calling on all parties to ensure that all feasible precautions are taken to protect civilians and civilian infrastructure. Explosive weapons with a wide impact area should be avoided in densely populated areas.
The ICRC is ready to provide further assistance and to mobilize its forensic team if needed.
For further information, please contact:
Rima Kamal, ICRC Sanaa, tel: +967 1 213844 or + 967 73 607 1967
Jenny Tobias, ICRC Geneva, tel: +41 22 730 3443 or +41 795 36 92 48