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Explosive violence in March 2015

Action on Armed Violence (AOAV) records incidents of explosive violence as they occur around the world. Since 1 October 2010 AOAV has used English-language media sources to capture information on attacks, including on the number of casualties and the weapon type used.

March saw 3,135 casualties of explosive violence worldwide. 78% of these were civilians (2,436 civilian deaths and injuries).

Read and download the full report: Explosive violence in March 2015

March 2015

 

Top Story: Yemen- Massive mosque bombing and Operation Decisive Storm

AOAV recorded a total of 849 deaths and injuries from explosive weapon use in Yemen in March 2014, 93% of whom were civilians. Half of the civilian casualties in Yemen this month were recorded in one attack- the Sana’a mosque bombings on 20 March 2015.

At least 137 people were killed and over 345 injured when four suicide bombers attacked two separate Shia Houthi mosques in the Yemen capital city. It was one of the deadliest bombing attacks ever recorded by AOAV, and marked a dramatic escalation in explosive violence in Yemen.

After the President fled the violence in the capital, an international coalition led by Saudi Arabia began an airstrike campaign of air strikes in Yemen. AOAV has recorded 293 civilian casualties from four air strikes, the worst of which came on 30 March when dozens of displaced people were killed when the al Mazraq camp was bombed. AOAV urges coalition forces not to use explosive weapons with wide-area effects in populated areas of Yemen.

Read AOAV condemns Yemen mosque bombings

 Aid In Danger: The impact of air strikes on the delivery of humanitarian aid in YemenBy Insecurity InsightAt the enScreen Shot 2015-02-13 at 15.49.04d of March 2015, violence escalated in Yemen, with devastating effects for humanitarians and those they assist. On 26 March 2015, a Saudi-led coalition began bombing Houthi rebel-controlled areas in Yemen. That day, reports indicate a doctor died and was pulled from under the rubble of a damaged building.

On 29 March, 40 people were killed in the Al-Mazraq IDP camp in north western province of Hajjah and the UN, INGOs, and foreign embassies evacuated over 200 expatriates from the country. Security management protocols used by humanitarian agencies include evacuations and help to prevent the deaths of international aid workers. National staff of local and international organisations however remain behind.

National staff of humanitarian agencies are civilians, and bear the same risks as their neighbours and family members and all those affected when armed violence escalates. They continue the direct aid delivery while expatriates continue to oversee programmes and maintain contact with funders from neighbouring countries (a security management approach known as “remote management”). As a result, air strikes disproportionately affect national staff and their protection is closely linked to the protection of civilians in general.

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