DUBAI- Saudi air strikes in Yemen on Tuesday killed 16 people including seven children, medical sources said.
The raid came days after the Ansarullah rebels also called Huthis offered to halt drone and ballistic missile attacks on Saudi Arabia as part of efforts to end a war that has pushed Yemen to the brink of famine.
The rebels claimed responsibility for the September 14 attacks on Saudi oil installations that knocked out half of the OPEC kingpin’s production and sent shockwaves through energy markets.
The United States and Saudi Arabia have however blamed Iran, saying the strikes were carried out with advanced cruise missiles and drones.
Tuesday’s air strikes in Qatabah in Daleh province in south Yemen, partly controlled by the rebels, was the second major attack by the Saudi’s since the Huthi offer.
“Sixteen people, including women and children, were killed and nine others injured” in a “coalition” air raid targeting a residence in Daleh, a local official told AFP on condition of anonymity.
A doctor at Al Thawra hospital in Ibb province where the bodies of those killed were taken said seven children and four women were among the dead.
The rebels condemned the coalition for its “continued aggression” against the Yemeni people, according to their Al-Masirah television.
The UN Special Envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths welcomed the rebels’ offer, saying it could bring an end to the bloody conflict.
Implementation of the initiative by the Huthis “in good faith could send a powerful message of the will to end the war”, he said.
Tens of thousands of people, most of them civilians, have been killed since Saudi Arabia and its allies launched air attacks in March 2015 in support of the beleaguered government after the Iran allied Ansarullah captured the capital Sanaa.
The fighting has displaced millions and left 24.1 million — more than two-thirds of the population — in need of aid.
The United Nations has described Yemen as the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. (AFP)