US defends cluster bomb transfers

Smoke billows as supporters of exiled Yemeni President Abedrabbo Mansour Hadi continue to clash with Shiite Huthi rebels in the Khor Maksar neighbourhood of the southern Yemeni city of Aden, on May 3, 2015The United States defended its supplies of cluster munitions Sunday, pointing to restrictions on the transfers, after Human Rights Watch said the bombs had been used by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen. HRW said it had gathered photographs, video and other evidence indicating that cluster munitions had been used in coalition air strikes against the Huthi rebel stronghold of Saada province in Yemen’s northern mountains in recent weeks. “We take all accounts of civilian deaths due to the ongoing hostilities in Yemen very seriously,” a US Defense Department official told AFP. The official said Washington was “looking carefully” into the HRW report’s claims.

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