Saudi-led Coalition Team to Investigate Civilian Casualties Is “Covering Up War Crimes” in Yemen

 | Alex Emmons 08/28/2018 10:04 AM MDT
Credit: Wikipedia Commons

In the aftermath of a horrific bombing earlier this month that killed dozens of children aboard a school bus in Yemen, the Trump administration urged the U.S.-backed, Saudi- and United Arab Emirates-led coalition to examine and account for the loss of civilian lives.

State Department spokesperson Heather Nauert called for a “thorough and transparent investigation into the incident,” and Secretary of State Mike Pompeo reportedly raised the issue in a phone call with Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman. Defense Secretary James Mattis told reporters that he supports the State Department’s call for an investigation, adding that he’d dispatched a three-star general to Riyadh to “look into what happened here.”

But as calls for an investigation mount, a new report from Human Rights Watch finds “fundamental problems” with the way the coalition investigates allegations of civilian harm, accusing its members of trying to “shield parties to the conflict and individual military personnel from criminal liability.”