No fewer than 12 prisoners were killed on Wednesday amid airstrikes by a Saudi-led alliance in the Yemeni capital, Sana’a, an official in the rebel-controlled Health Ministry said.
“Eighty others were injured in the strikes in central Sana’a,’’ the official added on condition of anonymity.
Witnesses said that the alliance jets carried out seven air raids targeting facilities controlled by the rebel Houthis in rebel-held Sana’a, including a prison for criminal offenders.
They added that the bombardment damaged a number of houses in the area.
So far, there has been no comment from the Saudi-led coalition.
The alliance has stepped up attacks in Sana’a since Dec. 4, when the Iran-back Houthis killed Yemen’s former president, Ali Abdullah Saleh, their erstwhile ally after he had shifted allegiances to the Saudis.
Yemen, one of the Arab world’s poorest countries, has been embroiled in a devastating conflict between the Saudi-backed government and rebels for the past three years.
The conflict has intensified since March 2015, when the Houthis advanced on the government’s temporary capital of Aden, prompting Saudi Arabia and Sunni allies to start an air campaign against the Shiite group.
The Saudis fear that the rebels will give their regional rival, Shiite Iran, a strategic foothold on the Arabian Peninsula.