Riyadh, Legal Consultant Mansour Ahmed Al-Mansour, official spokesman of the Joint Incidents Assessment Team (JIAT) on Yemen, held here today a press conference, announcing the results reached by the joint incidents assessment team in Yemen with regard to the latest allegations from international governmental and non-governmental organizations with regard to the military operations in Yemen, affirming that the adopted assessment is in line with the international humanitarian law and customary rules in addition to the commitment of the coalition forces of the rules of engagement.
With regard to what was stated in the report of the (Human Rights Watch) Organization on (11 July 2016) that the Coalition Air Forces attacked two warehouses out of five warehouses in an industrial area in (Al-Hudaydah), two bombs were dropped at (1:30) AM on (06/01/2016) on warehouses and production workshops. The first attack hits a warehouse for food products, and the second hits a warehouse for vehicle spare parts, there was no civilian casualties.
The JIAT vetted the incident and reviewed all documents, including procedures and rules of engagement, daily mission schedule, after mission report, mission video recordings, satellite images, provisions and principles of international humanitarian law and customary rules, and assessment of evidences, the JIAT found that based on intelligence report received by the Coalition Forces, that Al-Houthi armed militia seized and used the warehouses as weapons and ammunition storages, which is considered a legitimate military target whose destruction will achieve a military advantage based on article (52) paragraphs (2) of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions, and the availability of verification degrees based on customary rule No. (16). It lost its legal protection of civilian objects for the use of those armories by Al-Houthi armed militia, to support the war effort, which is a violation of Article (52) paragraphs (2/3), of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions.
Coalition Forces carried out an air mission on the target of (armories) in the city of (Al-Hudaydah) at (0:30) AM on Wednesday, (06/01/2016), using two guided bombs that hit its target.
During the study of the executed mission the JIAT found that the coalition forces have taken feasible precautions to avoid casualties or any accidental damages to civilian objects, and minimize it in any case to the minimum, by choosing the right time on target, and using of two guided bombs that commensurate with the size and type of the target, which is In accordance with article (57) of First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions and customary rules (15 and 17).
In the light of that, JIAT found that the procedures taken by coalition forces in dealing with the legitimate military target (armories) in (Al-Hudaydah) is in accordance with the International Humanitarian Law and customary rules.
With regard to the tasks of the JIAT to follow-up what appears in the media and after receiving reports that coalition forces on (December 13, 2017) attacked the military police camp in (Sana'a), which was seized and controlled by the Al-Houthi armed militia, killing (39) people and injuring (90) others, some of them prisoners.
According to the media, an official in the camp stated that the coalition aircrafts carried out raids on the camp in the eastern part of Sana'a, which had about (180) prisoners.
The JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including procedures and rules of engagement, daily mission schedule, after mission report, satellite images, mission video recordings, interviewing witnesses, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and customary rules, and assessment of evidences. JIAT found that based on the availability of verification degrees of intelligence information that Al-Houthi armed militia seized and controled the (military police camp) in the (Habrah) district of the capital (Sana'a) and there was a presence of fighters who completed their training, and they are prepared for combat military operations against the legitimate forces in Yemen and the Coalition Forces.
According to surveillance and reconnaissance reports, that showed individuals and groups confirmed to be part of the Al-Houthi armed militia and the availability of verification degrees based on customary rule No. (16), it is considered to be a high value military target whose destruction would result in a military advantage, that lost its legal protection of civilian objects in accordance with article (52) paragraphs (2/3) of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions.
The Coalition Forces carried out an air mission at (0:55) AM on Wednesday (December 13, 2017), on a planned military target "leaders and gatherings of the Al-Houthi armed militia inside the military police camp" using precision bombs.
The JIAT found out after reviewing of the mission Video and the Mission Report, that the Coalition Forces took all necessary precautions in accordance with Article (57) paragraphs (1/2a) of First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions, and customary rule (15) and (17) in terms of:
1. Checking the roads surrounding the building are free of civilians before and during the targeting.
2. Choosing the right time.
3. Using the right number of precision bombs.
4. All bombs fell inside the camp.
As the claim focused on Coalition Forces bombing (military police camp), which resulted in the death of a number of prisoners or detainees in a secret detention camp within the camp (place of claim), the JIAT found that:
1. Coalition forces have not been notified by any international body, or humanitarian organizations of the existence of a prison or detention camp within the military police camp.
2. The satellite images indicated that there were no signs or slogans indicating that the target was a prison or a building containing a prison.
3. It is not clear from the videotapes of the executed mission that there is a detention inside the camp, which could be recognized from the air by the two letters (IC).
4. The JIAT reviewed some of the evidence that emerged after the military operation, which showed the existence of people in a secret detention inside a military police camp building.
In the light of that, as the building of the Military Police Camp was taken over by the Al-Houthi armed militia, and was used specifically to support the war effort and to contribute effectively to the military operations, the JIAT concluded that the procedures followed by the Coalition Forces to target leaders and gatherings of members of the Al-Houthi armed militia in the (military police camp) in Sana'a, were correct and in accordance with international humanitarian law and its customary rules. The JIAT sees form a humanitarian respect that it is appropriate for the coalition states, to provide assistance to the wounded detainees and to the relatives of the dead detainees.
Source: Saudi Press Agency