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Escalation of fighting in Yemen forces temporary closure of Oxfam's office in Taiz

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Oxfam today expressed serious concern at the escalation of the fighting in Taiz and Aden governorates and called for an immediate ceasefire. The fighting has forced the organization to temporarily close its office in Taiz. Airstrikes and ground fighting in Taiz between pro-government forces and Houthis, and clashes between forces loyal to President Hadi and forces loyal to the “Southern Transitional Council” in Aden, have reportedly killed several people and forced dozens of families to flee their homes in the past few days. 

Shane Stevenson, Oxfam’s Country Director in Yemen, said: “The fighting is Taiz has escalated rapidly. We are particularly concerned at reports of civilian casualties and the use of landmines in total disregard to the rules of International Humanitarian Law. 

“With shells landing 500 meters away, we had no choice but to temporarily close our office in Hoban, Taiz. We are ready to resume our work providing much needed aid to Yemenis as soon as we can ensure the safety of our staff. 

“The situation is dire and we call on all sides to protect civilians and spare them further death and misery. A cease-fire is urgently needed to protect lives and to allow humanitarian assistance to reach people in need.”

 

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