US Drone Attacks Yemen Wedding Party, Killing 15 Civilians

Officials Initially Dubbed All Slain 'Al-Qaeda Suspects'

When a US drone strike tears through some vehicle, building, or picnic in Yemen, the Yemeni government is quick to label all of the victims “suspected al-Qaeda fighters,” and today was no different.

That claim was stretched beyond all credibility, however, when witnesses came forward saying today’s strike, on the outskirts of Qaifa, actually hit a wedding party.

The procession of vehicles was traveling together when missiles slammed into one of the middle cars, causing chaos and killing 10 civilians instantly, while wounding 12 others. Five of the wounded have since died, bringing the toll to 15.

The early indications are that this was yet another “signature” attack, where US drones target totally unidentified people doing something they thing seems terrorist-like. In this case, it was driving cars in a convoy, which is bad news for weddings and funeral processions.

The Hadi government has yet to issue an official statement, but is unlikely to be too critical of the US, having openly endorsed drone strikes repeatedly.

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Author: Jason Ditz

Jason Ditz is news editor of Antiwar.com.