At least 30 people were killed in air strikes that targeted Yemen's interior ministry building in the capital Sana'a on Friday night (18 September). Two buildings and several houses were also destroyed in the bombing by Saudi-led Arab forces.
Authorities were quoted as saying that those killed in the bombardment that continued on Saturday, 19 September, were mostly women and children. Sana'a has been under the control of Shi'ite inclined Houthi rebels, who had seized the city and placed President Abd Rabbuh Mansur Hadi under virtual house arrest. He is now in exile in neighbouring Saudi Arabia.
Reuters, citing residents claimed that as many as 10 air strikes were launched on the ministry building, a nearby police camp and a military building. Aid agencies have expressed the fear that casualties would mount as hospitals are ill-equipped to provide medical assistance to the injured. The poorest country in the Middle East has been appealing to humanitarian agencies for aid to hospitals as casualties rise due to lack of equipment and medical facilities.
Sunni powerhouse Saudi Arabia commenced air strikes on Yemen in March this year as Houthi forces were advancing towards its border. The Arab coalition wants Hadi to govern the country and has vowed to rid the nation of Houthi rule. Earlier this week, pro-government forces managed to drive out the Houthi rebels from the port city of Aden and exiled Yemeni Prime Minister Khaled Bahah returned to the war-torn country along with numerous members of the cabinet to form the government.