Twenty-one people have been killed and at least 16 wounded from the organization while carrying out their de-mining work
De-mining worker killed by landmine in Taiz
Col. Ali Saeed Al-Kaldi, a member of the Saudi-backed initiative to free Yemen of landmines known as MASAM, was killed by a landmine in the Mawza district of Taiz governorate, according to a statement released by the group.
Al-Kaldi was the leader of a team of de-mining workers in the Al-Hamili area of Mawza. The group called Al-Kaldi a martyr and offered condolences to his family. Twenty-one people have been killed and at least 16 wounded from the organization while carrying out their de-mining work.
The Houthis widespread use of landmines have killed and injured hundreds of civilians since 2017, and have prevented aid groups from reaching Yemen’s vulnerable communities, according to a Human Rights Watch (HRW) report released last year.
“Yemeni law and the 1997 Mine Ban Treaty ban all use of anti-personnel mines; anti-vehicle mines have been used indiscriminately in violation of the laws of war, posing dangers to civilians long after hostilities have ceased,” the HRW statement said.
“Houthi-laid landmines have not only killed and maimed numerous civilians, but they have prevented vulnerable Yemenis from harvesting crops and drawing clean water desperately needed for survival,” said Priyanka Motaparthy, acting emergencies director at Human Rights Watch in the report released last year. “Mines have also prevented aid groups from bringing food and health care to increasingly hungry and ill Yemeni civilians.”
Since the start of the MASAM project in 2018, the group has removed 161,238 mines in Yemen, according to the project’s program manager Osamah Al-Qusaybi.
In the statement mourning the loss of Al-Kaldi, Al-Qusaybi said the figure includes 103,211 unexploded ammunitions, 4,784 improvised explosive devices, 1,914 anti-personnel mines and 51,329 anti-vehicle mines.
"The area of land that has been cleared since the project began in 2018 has reached 9,917,384 square meters," he added.
Edited by Ahlam Mohsen and Casey Coombs