Yemen: MSF strongly condemns attack against its staff in Ad Dhale and suspends activities

Tuesday, October 2, 2018 — Amsterdam / Sanaa / London - The staff house of the international medical humanitarian organisation Médecins Sans Frontières/Doctors Without Borders (MSF) in Ad Dhale governorate, southern Yemen, was targeted with explosives on Monday evening, 1 October 2018. Fortunately, nobody was harmed.

This was the second attack against the MSF house in less than a week.

MSF strongly condemns the attacks on our compound and staff. Due to the severity of these attacks and the clear lack of safety for the team working there, the organisation has been forced to withdraw its staff from Ad Dhale and suspend its medical programmes until further notice.

MSF is one of the few medical organisations delivering humanitarian assistance to the community in Ad Dhale. These attacks will deprive thousands of Yemenis of much needed humanitarian and medical assistance.

Targeting the civilian population and humanitarian actors is prohibited under international humanitarian law at all times and deprives the population of humanitarian assistance. MSF calls on all warring parties, armed groups and individuals to respect and ensure the protection of humanitarian and health workers in Yemen.

MSF has been working in Ad Dhale since 2011 providing free medical care to the people of Ad Dhale, Qatabah, Al Azariq and Damt districts.

MSF remain committed to supporting the Yemeni people and currently operates 15 hospitals and health centres in Yemen and provides support to more than 16 hospitals or health centres across 12 governorates. 

MSF Nurses and medical providing medical assistants in Qataba hospital to wash out a man’s leg wound, infected due to long periods of sitting at home with external fixation for a broken leg, July 22, 2015 in Qataba, Al-Dhale governorate, Yemen. Credit MSF
An MSF flag hangs on one of MSF's facilities in Qataba, Al Dhale governorate. Airstrikes and ground shelling have hit civilian facilities in the past, and MSF demarcates all their facilities and vehicles to keep staff and patients safe. Yemen, July, 2014. Credit MSF
Two Yemeni men carry a stretcher out of Al Salam Hospital to go pick up a patient on July 22, 2015 in Qataba, Al Dhale governorate, Yemen. Credit MSF.