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UN: 68 Yemeni Civilians Killed in a Single Day in 'Absurd' War


The wreckage of a vehicle is pictured at the site of airstrikes in Sana'a, Yemen, Dec. 26, 2017.

Sixty-eight people were killed by Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in Yemen in a single day, a top U.N. official in the country said Thursday.

Fifty-four civilians, including eight children, were killed when an airstrike hit a "crowded popular market" in Taez province Tuesday. Fourteen people were killed by a raid in the Red Sea province of Hodeida on the same day, a statement by U.N. humanitarian coordinator Jamie McGoldrick said.

The two strikes brought the total number of civilians killed in Yemen by Saudi-led coalition airstrikes in the past 10 days to over 100.

"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 and the incommensurate suffering of its people, who are being punished as part of a futile military campaign by both sides," the statement said.

Houthi rebels seized the Yemeni capital of Sana'a in late 2014, forcing the country's internationally recognized president, Abdu Rabu Mansour Hadi, to flee to Saudi Arabia.

The Saudi-led coalition responded in March 2015 by fighting back against the rebels on behalf of Hadi's government. Since then, the World Health Organization says health facilities have reported more than 8,700 conflict-related deaths and 50,000 injuries.

Humanitarian organizations have repeatedly called attention to the effects of the conflict on civilians in Yemen, where the United Nations says three million people have been forced from their homes.