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Dozens killed in Saudi-led coalition airstrike on factory in Yemen

More than 13,000 people have been killed in the Yemen conflict [Getty]

Date of publication: 24 October, 2018

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A Saudi-led coalition airstrike hit a factory in Yemen's Hodeida on Wednesdy, killing at least 16 people.
At least 16 people were killed after a Saudi-led coalition airstrike hit a factory in Yemen’s Hodeida on Wednesday, according to medical workers in the war-torn country.

Twelve others were wounded in the strike in Bayt al-Faqih, a town 70 km (40 miles) south of Hodeida city, sources said, noting the victims were workers of the factory for vegetable packaging.

Colonel Turki al-Malki, a spokesman for the Saudi-led coalition battling Houthi rebels in Yemen said the alliance is investigating the incident.

“We take this report very seriously and it will be fully investigated, as all reports of this nature are, using an internationally approved, independent process. Whilst this is ongoing, it would be inappropriate to comment further,” he said.

Saudi Arabia and its allies intervened in Yemen in 2015 to support President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi's government after the Houthi rebels ousted it from the capital Sanaa and swathes of the country's north.

The coalition has used air power to oust the rebels from much of the country's south, but the Houthis have held onto Sanaa and the key Red Sea port of Hodeida.

Earlier this month, a humanitarian group said that attacks on Yemeni civilians are "unacceptable" but have taken on a chillingly regular frequency, a day after another airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition killed some 17 people in the port city of Hodeida.

The UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs called the incident "horrific".

In a statement on Sunday, the Norwegian Refugee Council said "attacks that kill and maim civilians are no longer an anomaly in Yemen's war."

Following the collapse of United Nations-backed talks in September, the coalition announced it was relaunching an assault on Hodeida city and its Red Sea port.

The fighting has since eased and the coalition has focused its raids on the city limits and other parts of the surrounding province.

The coalition has drawn heavy UN criticism for the high civilian death toll from its campaign in Yemen.

Yemen's war has left almost 13,000 people dead, mostly civilians, since the coalition intervened in 2015, and sparked what the UN has labelled the world's worst humanitarian crisis.

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