Two children killed in Yemen in Houthi bombardment

Mortar attack targeted residential area in Al Maghal

epa08635644 Pro-Houthi Shiite soldiers keep watch as pro-Houthi Shiite Yemenis attend Ashura Day procession in Sana'a, Yemen, 30 August 2020. Shiite Muslims are observing the holy month of Muharram, the climax of which is the Ashura festival that commemorates the martyrdom of Imam Hussein, a grandson of the Prophet Muhammad, in the Iraqi city of Karbala in the seventh century.  EPA/YAHYA ARHAB
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Two children have been killed and two others injured in a mortar attack by Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The bombardment took place in a residential area in the Haiys district of Hodeidah on Tuesday.

"The Houthi rebels shelled a populated neighborhood in Al Maghal area eastern the district of Haiys southeastern Hodeidah using mortars," Colonel Mamoon Al Mahjami the spokesperson of the Al Amalikah forces in Hodeidah told The National.

"The intensive indiscriminate bombardment led to the killing of two children and caused serious injuries to two little girls.

“One of the many mortars fired by the Houthi rebels fell over a house belonging to Majid Amer in the Al Maghal area killing his four-year-old son Abdullah Majid and injuring two of his daughters, Huda Majid, seven, and Jana Majid, five. Meanwhile another child, Mohammed Abdulrahman, age 10, who lives in the same neighborhood, was killed during the Houthi bombardment."

Colonel Al Mahjami said that the Houthi rebels deliberately bombarded the populated area of Al Maghal in Haiys which hosts dozens of families who have been displaced from Hodeidah's downtown as the clashes between the rebels and the pro-government forces intensified around the port city earlier in 2018.

Furthermore, the artillery attack which targeted civilians in Haiys on Tuesday was followed by a similar escalation by the Houthi rebels in areas of southern Hodeidah.

Residents in the Al Fazah area in the Al Tuhaiyta district of southern Hodeidah told The National that the Houthi rebels arbitrarily pounded their residences and kept shooting them while they were working in their farms.

"Just one hour after the crime they [the Houthi rebels] committed when they shelled the residential area of Al Mahgal in Haiys killing children, the Houthis intensively shelled the eastern swathes of our village in Al Fazah and kept shooting the farmers who were working in their farms," Fadhel Mohammed, a resident in Al Fazah area, told The National on Tuesday

“The indiscriminate shelling caused damage to some residences and ignited fear among women and children."

The Houthi rebels have been repeatedly attacking the Al Fazah area in the last couple of months attempting to cut the main supply route for the pro-government forces deployed near Hodeidah.

Separately, the Houthi rebels are continuing the military escalation in northern Yemen.

They have been leading a large-scale offensive in a bid to take over Marib city, the last stronghold for the Yemeni legitimate government in northern Yemen.

Tribal sources, based in rural areas in southern Marib, told The National that the Houthi rebels took control of key areas in the southern province on Sunday and Monday.

“The Houthi rebels have been escalating in the northern and southern areas of Marib since last January and since the beginning of August they have been launching a large-scale offensive aiming to take control over the city,” a tribal source in the Murad tribe said.

Yemeni intellectuals and activists sent an open letter to the UN and its special envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths urging them to take immediate action to halt the Houthi offensive at the city of Marib, which hosts over two million Internally Displaced Persons.