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17 December 2014 – Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon and the United Nations Security Council have strongly condemned the bomb attacks in Radaa in Yemen’s Al Bayda province yesterday, which killed more than 25 people, including at least 15 schoolchildren.
According to media reports, a school bus carrying the 15 school girls was hit by a car bomb as it passed a checkpoint in the Yemeni province of Al Bayda, south of the country’s capital of Sana’a.
In a statement issued by his spokesperson in New York, Mr. Ban expressed his sympathies and sincere condolences to the families of the victims of these heinous attacks.
“There is absolutely no justification for such cowardly terrorist acts that brutally take the lives of innocent civilians, including children,” the statement said, adding that the Secretary-General called for the perpetrators to be brought to justice.
Later in the day, the UN Security Council also strongly condemned the “senseless attack”, and reiterated their condemnation of violations and abuses committed against children by terrorists.
In a statement to the press, Council members expressed their deep sympathy and condolences to the families and friends “of those killed and injured by these heinous acts”, as well as to the people and the Government of Yemen.
Condemning the growing number of attacks carried out or sponsored by Al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula, the Council underlined the need to bring perpetrators, organizers, financiers and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism to justice, and urged all States, in accordance with their obligations under international law and relevant Security Council resolutions, to cooperate actively with the Yemeni authorities in this regard.
The strong statements from the Council and the Seretary-General echo a statement issued yesterday by the UN Children’s Fund (UNICEF) in the immediate aftermath of the bombing in Yemen and the equally savage mass killing of children in a school in Peshawar, Pakistan where 132 children were murdered by Taliban militants.
“There can be no justification for such unspeakable savagery against children as they go about the simple act of going to school, or against teachers as they work to educate them,” UNICEF declared in a statement.“Each life taken in Peshawar and Al Bayda is a future lost forever.”