A year of war that has set Yemen back decades


Ahmed Sharif stood on top of a mound of rubble, waving a dinner plate. "The Saudis attacked this," he said. "There was no weapons facility. There was no military site. This was a tourist attraction."
He descended from the wreckage of a house that had stood for 1,400 years to gave me a tour of Kawkaban - an ancient citadel perched on a cliff top. Locals say this Yemeni treasure was hit by Saudi airstrikes in February, killing seven civilians. Mr. Sharif's brother-in-law was one of them. He pointed to fragments of clothing in among the rubble. "That's what's left of him," he said.
The dead of Kawkaban are among at least 3,200 civilians killed here in the past year. The United Nations says most were victims of airstrikes by the Saudi-led coalition. A UN panel has accused the Saudis and their allies of bombing schools, health facilities, wedding parties and camps for the displaced.

'The pain is so intense'

Saudi Arabia says it makes every effort to avoid hitting civilian targets, but that's little consolation to the burn victim we met in hospital in Sanaa.
Abdel Bari Omar survived an airstrike outside the city last month, but only just. The van driver lay in bed, bandaged from the chest down. He was transporting gas cylinders when the fighter jets struck.
"The pain is so intense only God can understand," he said, through trembling lips. "Whatever way I turn I am in agony. I'm afraid this pain will stop my heart." His other fear is about the future of his children now their breadwinner has burns on more than 40% of his body.

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