MOSCOW (Sputnik) — On Thursday, the UN Human Rights Council declined to create an independent investigation of human rights violations in Yemen.
"It is unacceptable that, after 18 months of conflict in Yemen, the Human Rights Council is still failing to protect Yemeni civilians and is instead turning a blind eye to the human rights violations perpetrated by all parties to the conflict," Sajjad Mohammad Sajid said. "The job of the Human Rights Council is to send a strong message that the lives of civilians matter, and that those responsible for the killing of civilians should be punished — for the second time in this conflict it has failed."
He added that the fact that thousands of civilians were killed by airstrikes and indiscriminate shelling in Yemen proves that a national inquiry alone was insufficient to bring the ones responsible for the atrocities to justice.
Yemen has been engulfed in a military conflict between the government headed by Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi and Houthi rebels, the country’s main opposition force, since 2014.
Since March 2015, the Saudi-led coalition of mostly Persian Gulf countries has been carrying out airstrikes against the Houthis at Hadi's request. The coalition has been accused by the United Nations and humanitarian organizations of bombing hospitals and killing civilians.
According to the UN Human Rights Office, almost 4,000 civilians have been killed and some 7,000 injured in the war-torn country between March 26, 2015 and September 22, 2016.