A mortar shell fired by the Iran-backed Houthis into residential areas in Yemen’s city of Taiz seriously injured three children on Sunday, less than a day after the Houthis killed two servicemen and injured one in another strike in Yemen’s southern province of Lahj.
Three children who live close to an old airfield west of Taiz were reportedly shepherding their sheep when a Houthi mortar bomb fired from the city’s outskirts struck the ground, seriously wounding them.
Maher Al-Abasi, a local human rights activist who saw the children, told Arab News that one child was evacuated right away to an intensive care unit at Rawada hospital as doctors severed one of the other children’s legs to save them.
“A mother of two children collapsed upon seeing her children in the hospital. As a result, I was unable to hear her story of what had occurred,” Al-Abasi said, adding that the youngsters came from a family that had previously escaped Houthi brutality in Ibb province.
“The Houthis deliberately targeted civilian areas since the nearby battlefield has been quiet for some time.”
Since April, when the UN-brokered truce went into force, dozens of civilians and combatants have been killed or injured in random drone, artillery and missile strikes by the Houthis on residential areas in the besieged city of Taiz.
The truce was not renewed earlier this month after the Houthis failed to lift their siege on Taiz by opening one important road going into and out of the city, as well as refusing to pay public employees in areas under their control.
The Houthi mortar strike on Taiz on Sunday comes less than a day after the Houthis attacked government troops in the Karesh district of the province of Lahj on Saturday night, killing two soldiers and injuring another.
Social media images show thick smoke rising from the targeted region.
Government troops reportedly fired back at the Houthis, who were attempting to clear the way for ground troops to march into additional regions in Lahj.
The Houthis have increased their attacks on government-controlled regions in Marib, Taiz, Lahj, Abyan and Hodeidah, threatening to damage oil infrastructure and ships if the government does not pay public employees in areas under their control.
At the same time, Yemen’s government has stepped up its diplomatic efforts throughout the world to collect more public support for its recent decision to label the Houthis as a terrorist group, as well as condemnations for the Houthis’ assaults and opposition to requests to restore the truce.
Yemen’s official news agency SABA said that Foreign Minister Ahmed Awadh bin Mubarak met with his Arab counterparts in Algeria, spoke with international diplomats and discussed the latest Houthi attacks on oil facilities in Hadramout and Shabwa, as well as the militia’s rejection of peace initiatives to end the war.
SABA also stated that the leader of the Presidential Leadership Council, Rashad Al-Alimi, left Aden, Yemen’s temporary capital, on Sunday to attend the Arab Summit in Algeria.