Over 40 Somali refugees dead in attack on boat off Red Sea in Yemen

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Somali refugees

More than 40 people including women and children have been shot dead aboard a boat carrying Somali refugees in the Red Sea off war-torn Yemen, officials said on Friday.

It was not immediately clear who was behind the attack.

The Somali refugees were hit by light weapons fire in waters off rebel-held Hodeida, but the boat managed to dock in the city’s port, an official there said.

The International Organization for Migration, which has operations in Yemen, said 42 bodies had been recovered.

The port official said dozens of Somalis who survived the attack, as well as three Yemeni traffickers, had been taken to the city’s prison.

More than 30 wounded were reported to have been taken to hospital.

The rebel-controlled Saba agency accused the Saudi-led coalition battling the insurgents of attacking the refugees from the air but did not provide further details.

Major General Ahmed Assiri, spokesman for the coalition, dismissed the accusation and told AFP that the force had not been involved in fighting in Hodeida.

Source: AFP