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JIAT Issues Statement on Yemen Investigations | ASHARQ AL-AWSAT English Archive 2005 -2017
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People inspect damage to the port of Mukalla city in southern Yemen April 24, 2016. REUTERS/Stringer

The Joint Incident Assessment Team (JIAT), has given the following release on its findings concerning several incidents reported inside Yemen:

The Incident of (Abs) Hospital, Abs City, Hajjah Governorate

Doctors without borders, also known by the (MFS), published a statement on its official website claiming that the coalition forces struck Abs-Hospital in Abs city, Hajjah Governorate, on 15 August 2016, resulted with (7) people dead, and (13) injured.

After the statement, the JIAT body investigated facts and given circumstances surrounding the incident, and found that on 15 August 2016, coalition forces received intelligence information about presence of Houthi leadership gathering northern Abs City. Based on incoming intelligence coalition Air Force raided the site.

Reconnaissance registered exiting vehicle activity and proceeding south.

Houthis vehicles were targeted, and struck it nearby a building that does not display any strike preemptive indicatives, proving that it is a hospital. The building proved otherwise being the Abs-Hospital.

In light of the findings, the JIAT body found that damages inflicted against building were collateral damage caused by the targeting of a legitimate military objective, the vehicle. The damage was deemed unintentional.

The JIAT found that coalition forces must extend an apology for this involuntary mistake and provide proper assistance affected families. Coalition forces must also investigate those responsible for the incident, to account for the violations of approved rules of engagements (ROEs), and take proper respective action.

The strike on Asmaa school in Al-Mansuriyah city

Amnesty international claimed that the (Asmaa) school in Al-Mansuriyah city in Al-Hudaydah governorate has suffered aerial bombardment on August, 2015.

Having investigated facts and circumstances of the incident, the JIAT body found that coalition forces targeted, the location based on intelligence information confirming its involvement with the militarized activity of Houthi militia and the former president’s forces. Intelligence showed that the location was used as a militia headquarters for storage, distribution of smuggled weapons from Al-Hudaydah port.

The target was considered a high-value legitimate military objective that secures a certain military advantage. According to international humanitarian law, the location lost legal protection afforded to civilian areas and settings, because of its militarization.

More so, school activities were suspended due to surrounding conditions.

Investigations did not show any loss in lives or any sustained human injuries. There was only the estimated 25% partial damage inflicted to the building .
Concerning case 12, the JIAT body found that coalition forces followed the right producers in the proper targeting process.

(Al -Mil) factory in (Sanaa) city

The Swedish embassy has presented claims that the food factory of Swedish honorary consul Mr. Abdullah Ahmed Al-Aqil located in (Sanaa) city suffered aerial bombardment on 9 August 2016 resulting in the death of (16) workers.

Investigations showed that collation forces struck two targets the mentioned day, the first target was the telecommunication antennas used for military purposes in (Ayban) mountain, western (Sanaa), (7) kilometers away from the subject factory.

The second military target was a cave operated for military purposes in eastern (Al-Nahdyan) mountain, southern Sanaa, (10) kilometers away from the subject factory.

Both abovementioned locations are considered legitimate military targets according to rules of engagement and international humanitarian law.

In light of that, the JIAT body did not find evidence that the collation forces struck the said factory. Thus, collation forces are not responsible for the alleged attack on the factory.