U.S. Fails to Assess Civilian Deaths in Yemen War, Internal Report Says

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The strikes have hit hospitals, schools, buses and a funeral hall, among other sites. On Jan. 21, an airstrike on a prison run by the Houthis killed at least 70 people and injured dozens of others, according to Houthi officials and international aid groups.

More than 150,000 people have been killed in the war, including nearly 15,000 civilians, according to an estimate by the Armed Conflict Location and Event Data Project. The conflict has resulted in what the United Nations has called the worst man-made humanitarian crisis.

In February 2021, Mr. Biden said in a speech at the State Department that he would end all American support for “offensive operations” in Yemen, including “relevant arms sales.” He and other American officials have not said publicly what that entails. For now, new sales of air-to-ground projectiles have been suspended, officials say.

The Washington Post recently published an investigative report on how a substantial number of air raids in Yemen have been carried out by jets developed, maintained and sold by U.S. companies and by pilots trained by the U.S. military.

“It’s hard to say definitively that the U.S. is not supporting the offensive campaign there,” said Dalia Dassa Kaye, a Middle East expert at the Burkle Center for International Relations at the University of California at Los Angeles. “That remains a concern.”

“A lot of ammunition, supplies, things in the pipeline are still continuing,” she added.

Bombs made by Raytheon have been among the deadliest weapons used by the Saudi-led coalition in the airstrikes that have killed civilians. The State Department approved the sales of the munitions, which puts agency officials at risk of prosecution for war crimes, according to an internal legal memo from 2016.

In 2016, after an airstrike at a funeral hall killed more than 100 people and injured hundreds of others, the Obama administration blocked the sale by Raytheon of about 16,000 guided munitions kits to Saudi Arabia. The Trump administration restarted the sales as it strengthened ties to Saudi Arabia and the Emirates, another leading power in the war.

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