AntiWarcom & Reuters – 2014-01-16 11:24:19
US Drone Strike Kills Yemeni Farmer
Jason Ditz / AntiWar.com
(January 15, 2014) — US rockets hit a field on the outskirts of the village of al-Houta in southeastern Yemen today, and shrapnel killed a farmer who was walking one at the time.
Local officials have confirmed the killing, but have declined to give any further details, beyond the farmer not being a specific target nor the usual references to a victim as a â€œsuspect.â€
There was already growing anger about the US drone strikes against Yemen in recent weeks after the December attack on a wedding procession, a â€œsignature strikeâ€ in which the US assumed the convoy of cars had to be terror related without any attempt to identify any of the people involved. The attack killed 15 civilians.
So far the US has taken the same strategy as with Pakistan, simply remaining mum on the strikes and continuing to attack whenever they feel like it. Yemenâ€™s president, Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi, has endorsed the drone program, and there seems to be little effort by the rest of Yemenâ€™s government to do much about the deaths.
Yemen Drone Strikes Kills Farmer -Witnesses
ADEN (January 15 2014) — A Yemeni farmer was killed in a US drone strike on Wednesday in what witnesses said was an attack apparently intended for suspected Islamist militants in southeastern Yemen.
Witnesses said the farmer was killed by shrapnel from two rockets fired by the drone early in the morning as he walked home in the village of al-Houta, near the city of Shibam.
A local government official confirmed the report but declined to give further details.
The United States has stepped up drone strikes as part of a campaign against Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), regarded by Washington as the most active wing of the network.
Yemen, AQAP’s main stronghold, is among a handful of countries where the United States acknowledges using drones, although it does not comment on the practice.
Last month, at least 15 people were killed and five others injured when a drone mistook a wedding party travelling in the central Yemeni province of al-Bayda for an al Qaeda convoy.
Stabilizing Yemen, which is also struggling with southern separatists and northern rebels, is an international priority amid fears of upheaval in a state that flanks top oil producer Saudi Arabia and major shipping lanes.
Reporting by Mohammed Mukhashaf, Writing by Sami Aboudi; Editing by Gareth Jones.
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