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Saudi-led Airstrikes Kill 44 in Yemen’s Sana'a

  • VOA News

Houthi rebels carry the coffin of a fellow Houthi who was killed in a Saudi-led airstrike, during his funeral in Sana'a, Yemen, June 7, 2015.

Houthi rebels carry the coffin of a fellow Houthi who was killed in a Saudi-led airstrike, during his funeral in Sana'a, Yemen, June 7, 2015.

Airstrikes by a Saudi-led coalition in the Yemeni capital Sunday killed at least 44 people, including civilians, one week before the scheduled start of peace talks between rival political factions.

The bombings targeted the headquarters of Yemen's armed forces in Houthi rebel-held Sana'a.

Saudi Arabia launched an air campaign against the Houthi militia in late March after the group pushed President Abd Rabbu Mansour Hadi out of the capital and into exile in Riyadh.

The United Nations announced Saturday that multilateral negotiations would begin in Geneva on June 14.

The Houthis seized Sana'a in a months-long campaign that began in September. Since then, political instability and clashes between pro-government and rebel factions have combined with the Saudi-led airstrikes to plunge the country into a deep humanitarian crisis. Some 2,000 people have been killed since the fighting began, according to U.N. estimates.

Attempts at U.N.-mediated peace talks and cease-fires have repeatedly failed since the start of the violence, which began with internal political disputes and escalated into a regional conflict.

On Saturday, Saudi officials said their forces had intercepted a Scud missile fired into the kingdom's southwestern region from Yemen territory.

The Saudi state news agency said a U.S.-made Patriot missile was used to shoot down the Scud close to the city of Khamis Mushait. The report said the Scud was launched near the Houthi rebel center of Saada in Yemen's northern mountains.

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