JIAT Refutes Allegations against Coalition Forces

Wednesday 1443/3/21 - 2021/10/27
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Riyadh, October 27, 2021, SPA -- Official Spokesman of the Joint Incidents Assessment Team (JIAT) in Yemen Legal Counsellor Mansour Al-Mansour refuted a number of claims raised by global bodies and international organizations on errors allegedly committed by the Coalition Forces to Restore Legitimacy in Yemen during their military operations in Yemen.
In a press conference held at the Armed Forces Officers Club in Riyadh today, Al-Mansour reviewed the results of assessing five incidents included in those claims as follows:
With regard to what was observed by (JIAT) in the open sources about the report issued by (Doctors for Human Rights) dated (March 2020), which included that on (18/01/2016) Coalition Forces aircraft attacked (Ketaf Rural Hospital) in (Ketaf and Al-Baqa) directorate of (Sa'da) governorate, the attack led to a temporary suspension of services, the hospital was then rehabilitated by (UNICEF).
JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including air tasking orders, daily mission schedule, mission execution procedures, after mission reports, video recordings of the executed mission, satellite images, open sources, coordinates provided by the representative of the legitimate Yemeni government in JIAT for the health centers and hospitals contained in the report, the website of the National Information Center in Yemen which contains the health centers and hospitals in Yemen, Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL), Coalition Forces rules of engagement, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules, and after assessment of evidences, JIAT found that (Ketaf Rural Hospital) is located in the city of (Ketaf) in the eastern part of (Sa'da) governorate, and is in the Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL).
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces on (18/01/2016), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that the Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Ketaf) city, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (42.5) kms away from (Ketaf Rural Hospital) of the claim.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces one day before and one day after the date of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1. On Sunday (17/01/2016) the day before the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Ketaf) city, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (23.5) kms away from (Ketaf Rural Hospital) of the claim.
2. On Tuesday (19/01/2016) the day after the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Ketaf) city, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (31) kms away from (Ketaf Rural Hospital) of the claim.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images of the claimed site (Ketaf Rural Hospital), after the date of the claim, the following was found:
1. (Ketaf Rural Hospital) of the claim consists of a building and its annexes, surrounded by a fence.
2. There are no signs of destruction or damages caused by aerial targeting on (Ketaf Rural Hospital) building.
By Comparing the allegation with the air mission carried out on the day of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1. The site of (Ketaf Rural Hospital) does not correspond to the site of the military target, as the claimed site is in (Ketaf and Al-Baqa) directorate, while the military target is in (Sahar) directorate, (42.5) km away from each other.
2. The claim indicated that the hospital was targeted by the Coalition aircraft, while satellite images after the date of the claim showed no signs of aerial targeting on the hospital building.
In light of that, JIAT found that Coalition Forces did not target (Ketaf Rural Hospital) in (Ketaf and Al-Baqa) directorate of (Sa'da) governorate, on (18/01/2016) as claimed.
With regard to what was received by (JIAT), that on (03/09/2015) Coalition Forces targeted (Athban Alasasiah School) in (Huraib) directorate of (Marib) governorate, (attached the coordinates of location of the school), which resulted in its destruction.
JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including air tasking orders, daily mission schedule, mission execution procedures, after mission reports, satellite images, field visit by members of JIAT to (Marib) governorate in Yemen, hearing witnesses testimonies about the incident, inspection of (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim, Coalition Forces rules of engagement, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules, and after assessment of evidences, JIAT found that (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim is located in the north part of (Huraib) directorate, and in the south part of (Marib) governorate, about (60) kms away from (Marib) city, in a semi-isolated area, and no buildings adjacent to it.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces on (03/09/2015), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that the Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in in (Huraib) directorate of (Marib) governorate, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (63) kms away from (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces one day before and one day after the date of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1. On Wednesday (02/09/2015) the day before the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in in (Huraib) directorate of (Marib) governorate, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (52) kms away from (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim.
2. On Friday (04/09/2015) the day after the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in in (Huraib) directorate of (Marib) governorate, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (10) kms away from (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images of the claimed site (Athban Alasasiah School), before and after the date of the claim, the following was found:
1.The satellite images before the date of the claim show that (Athban Alasasiah School) consists of (3) buildings inside a U- shaped wall, with a canopy covering part of the school yard.
2.The satellite images dated (31/12/2015), after the date of the claim show damages of the canopy covering part of the school yard.
Members of JIAT visited (Athban Alasasiah School) site in (Huraib) directorate, of (Marib) governorate of the claim, interviewed the witnesses, and prepared a report on what was seen, which includes the following:
1.Documentation of the damages to (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim, using photos and videos.
2.Meeting with the school principal, and the school guard at the claimed site.
JIAT specialists studied the field visit report to (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim, and the attached photos and videos, and compared them with the affects resulting from aerial bombs, the following was found:
1.The school yard covered by canopy was unpaved.
2.There is a small hole in the school yard, of a size that is not commensurate with the effects of the aerial bombs.
3.No signs of fire caused by air bombs on the interior walls and front facades of the school interior buildings.
4.Partial subsidence of the roof of the northern building, and no traces of air bombs penetrating the roof.
5.The size of the effects on the damaged part of the building is not commensurate with the size of the effects of an aerial bombing.
6.No damages or traces of fire to the canopy metal poles in the school yard.
7. The school principal stated that the targeting took place late at night, this timing does not correspond to the timing of the air mission, which was at (4:40) p.m., and was (42.5) km away from (Athban Alasasiah School) of the claim.
In light of that, JIAT found that Coalition Forces did not target (Athban Alasasiah School) in (Huraib) directorate of (Marib) governorate, on (03/09/2015) as claimed.
With regard to what JIAT observed in the open sources regarding the report issued by (Doctors for Human Rights) dated (March 2020), that on (29/05/2015) Coalition aircraft struck (Ghadran Health Center), at the time the center was under construction, and Houthis were using it as a military base.
JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including air tasking orders, daily mission schedule, mission execution procedures, after mission reports, video recording for the executed mission, satellite images, coordinates provided by the representative of the legitimate Yemeni government in JIAT for the health centers and hospitals contained in the report, the website of the National Information Center in Yemen which contains the health centers and hospitals in Yemen, Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL), Coalition Forces rules of engagement, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules, and after assessment of evidences, JIAT found that (Ghadhran Health Center) is located in north part of (Bani Hashish) directorate, east of (Sana'a) city, and that on the date of the claim it was a building under construction, it was not functioning, and was not in the Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL) at the time.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces on (29/05/2015), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that Coalition Forces received intelligence information about (the presence of Al-Houthi armed militia leaders, and weapons and ammunition depot), inside a (building) that was seized by Al-Houthi armed militia in (Bani Hashish) directorate of (Sana'a) governorate.
The degrees of verification were available through the ground sources that confirmed the presence of (leaders from Al-Houthi armed militia, and weapons and ammunition depot), inside a (building) that was seized and used to support the war effort, based on rule (16) of customary international humanitarian law, which is considered to be a legitimate military target, that the targeting of it would achieve a concrete, direct and certain military advantage, as the legal protection of the civilian objects (building) lost for using it to contribute effectively to military actions, based on Article (52) of the First Additional Protocol of the Geneva Conventions and rule (8) of customary international humanitarian Law.
Therefore, on (29/05/2015), Coalition Forces carried out an air mission on a legitimate military target, a (building) that was seized by Al-Houthi armed militia, that (leaders from Al-Houthi armed militia, and weapons and ammunition depot) inside it, in (Bani Hashish) directorate of (Sana'a), using a single guided bomb that hit its target.
The Coalition Forces have taken the possible precautions to avoid accidental loss or damage to civilian and civilian objects, or in any case, minimize it to the lowest possible, during the planning and execution of the military operation through the following:
1. Using one guided bomb which commensurate with the size of the target.
2. Ensuring no civilian presence at the military target site the (building) of the claim before and during the targeting.
based on article (57) of the First Additional Protocol to the Geneva Conventions, and rules (15) and (17) of customary international humanitarian law.
By studying the after mission report of the mission carried out, JIAT found the bomb hit the target.
JIAT specialists studied the video recordings of the mission carried out, and found the following:
1. There are no signs or slogans on the building indicating that it is a health center.
2. No civilians were observed before and during the targeting
3. The aim was on the military target the (building).
4. The bomb hit the specified aim point of the military target, in the western part of the building.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images military target site after the date of the claim, the following was found:
1. There are no buildings adjacent to the military target, and is located in a semi-isolated area from residential areas.
2. There are no signs or slogans on the building indicating that it is a health center.
3. Traces of aerial targeting on the western part of the building the (military target), and no other damages to the remaining buildings.
In light of that: JIAT found the procedures taken by Coalition Forces, in dealing with the legitimate military target (building under construction) that was seized by Al-Houthi armed militia, that (leaders from Al-Houthi armed militia, and weapons and ammunition depot) inside it, in (Bani Hashish) directorate of (Sana'a) governorate, were correct and in accordance with the International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules.
With regard to the statement issued by the Office of the United Nations Resident Coordinator and humanitarian coordinator in Yemen, on (18 March 2020), that on (13/03/2020), missiles hit two buildings at (Al-Thawrah General Hospital), which serves hundreds of thousands of Yemenis in (Taiz) city.
JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including air tasking orders, daily mission schedule, daily missions of the Coalition Surface Forces, satellite images, open sources, Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL), Coalition Forces rules of engagement, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules, and after assessment of evidences, JIAT found that (Al-Thawrah Hospital) is located in the north-eastern part of (Taiz) city, within the urban area, and is in the Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL).
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces on (13/03/2020), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that the Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Taiz) governorate.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces one day before and one day after the date of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1. On Thursday (12/03/2020) the day before the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Taiz) city of (Taiz) governorate.
2. On Saturday (14/03/2020) the day after the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Taiz) city of (Taiz) governorate.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images of (Al-Thawrah Hospital), after the date of the claim, the following was found:
1. (Al-Thawrah General Hospital) of the claim consists of a building and its annexes, surrounded by a fence.
2. No signs of damages caused by aerial targeting on (Al-Thawrah General Hospital) buildings.
JIAT specialists studied the photos and videos published in the open sources of the claimed site, the following was found:
1. Damages were seen on the internal parts of (Al-Thawrah General Hospital) building in (Taiz) city, including glass debris, and a damage to the wall of one of the buildings.
2. By analyzing the video published on one of the satellite channels, it was clear that the damages to the hospital are not the result of aerial targeting.
3. The damages to (Al-Thawrah General Hospital) are similar to the effects of surface-to-surface firing.
By studying the daily missions carried out by the Coalition Surface Forces on (13/03/2020), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that the Coalition Surface Forces did not carry out any firing in (Taiz) city.
In light of that, JIAT found that Coalition Forces is not responsible for the targeting of (Al-Thawrah General Hospital), in (Taiz) city of (Taiz) governorate, on (13/03/2020) as claimed.
With regard to what JIAT observed in the open sources regarding the report issued by (Doctors for Human Rights) dated (March 2020), that on (09/07/2015) coalition aircraft attacked (Alwaht Hospital) which was occupied by Houthi fighters and used as a military base at the time, the attack Caused severe damage to the facility.
JIAT vetted the incident, and reviewed all documents, including air tasking orders, daily mission schedule, mission execution procedures, after mission reports, video recordings of the executed mission, satellite images, open sources, coordinates provided by the representative of the legitimate Yemeni government in JIAT, for the health centers and hospitals contained in the report, the website of the National Information Center in Yemen which contains the health centers and hospitals in Yemen, Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL), Coalition Forces rules of engagement, provisions and principles of International Humanitarian Law and its customary rules, and after assessment of evidences, JIAT found that (Alwaht Hospital) is located in the north part of (Alwaht) city, and is in the Coalition Forces No Strike List (NSL).
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces on (09/07/2015), which is the date of the claim, JIAT found that the Coalition Forces carried out an air missions on a military target in (Sabar) city in (Taban) directorate of (Lahj) governorate, and was (3200) meters away from (Alwaht Hospital) of the claim, using one guided bomb that hits its target.
By studying the air missions carried out by the Coalition Forces one day before and one day after the date of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1. On Wednesday (08/07/2015) the day before the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (AlWaht) city, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (7500) meters away from (Alwaht Hospital) of the claim.
2. On Friday (10/07/2015) the day after the claimed date, Coalition Forces did not carry out any air missions in (Alwaht) city, and that the closest military target the Coalition Forces dealt with was (10.3) kms away from (Alwaht Hospital) of the claim.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images of the claimed site (Alwaht Hospital), after the date of the claim, the following was found:
1. (Alwaht Hospital) of the claim consists of (two building) surrounded by a fence.
2. The satellite images dated (08/06/2016) was the closest image available after the date of the claim, which showed no signs of damages caused by aerial targeting on (Alwaht Hospital) buildings.
JIAT specialists studied the satellite images of the military target site after the date of the claim, which showed traces of aerial targeting on the military target.
By Comparing the allegation with the air mission carried out on the date of the claim, JIAT found the following:
1.(Al-Waht Hospital) is located in (Al-What) city, while the military target is located in (Sabar) city.
2.The description and nature of the claimed site does not correspond to the description and nature of the military target of the task carried out.
By Comparing the claim with what was published in the open sources, JIAT found the following:
1.The claim included a photo for (Al-Waht Hospital) of the claim, showing no signs of aerial targeting.
2.No news, photos, or videos published in the open sources indicating that Coalition Forces targeted (Al-Waht Hospital).
3.Open sources published news indicating that fighters belonging to Al-Houthi armed militia raided (Al-Waht Hospital).
In light of that, JIAT found that Coalition Forces did not target (Al-Waht Hospital) in (Taban) directorate of (Lahj) governorate on (09/07/2015) as claimed.
--SPA
19:49 LOCAL TIME 16:49 GMT
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