SHAFAQNA – A local Yemeni official says a drone strike suspected to have been carried out by the US has left two Yemeni children dead in the south-central Bayda Province.
The unnamed provincial official said on Tuesday that the incident took place outside the Yakla village of Bayda’s Qifah district on Sunday, when the victims, aged 10 and 12, had been tending a herd of goats.
Local residents also confirmed the attack and identified the slain brothers as Ahmed and Mohammed al-Khobze.
The Pentagon is yet to comment on the aerial attack.
Yakla was the scene of a US ground and aerial attack on January 29, the first authorized by President Donald Trump.
A $75 million US aircraft was destroyed while dozens of Yemeni civilians and US Navy SEAL Ryan Owens were killed in the rare commando raid.
The Pentagon claimed that the deadly attack had produced intelligence about the al-Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP) militant group.
However, senior US officials rejected the claim, saying that they were not aware of any actionable intelligence.
Bill Owens, Ryan’s father, also denounced the raid and demanded an investigation into it, asking, “Why at this time did there have to be this stupid mission when it wasn’t even barely a week into [Trump’s] administration?”
Reports say Washington has conducted more than 40 strikes against what are claimed to be al-Qaeda targets in Yemen since March 2, when it stepped up its campaign in Yemen.
The conflict-ridden country has been under regular US drone strikes, with Washington claiming to be targeting al-Qaeda elements while local sources say civilians have been the main victims of the attacks.
Yemen has also been rocked by a military campaign by Saudi Arabia since late March 2015. The US has been providing huge amounts of arms and military training to kingdom’s military.
The Saudi aggression, which allegedly seeks to restore Yemen’s former government to power, has killed over 12,000 Yemenis according to the latest tallies.