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humanitarian crisis

Saudi-led airstrike reportedly kills 15 in Yemen as Saudi Prince faces protests in France

An airstrike by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen killed at least 15 people Monday, officials told The Associated Press.

The country is mired in an ongoing conflict between the Yemeni government — backed by Saudi Arabia, the United States, and the United Arab Emirates — and Iran-backed Houthi rebels. The strike hit the southwestern city of Taiz, an area particularly rife with violence.

The deadly airstrike landed as Saudi Arabian Crown Prince Mohammed Bin Salman arrived in France to meet with French President Emmanuel Macron to discuss a "strategic partnership." The crown prince was met by protests in Paris, AP reports, as demonstrators denounced Saudi Arabia's role in repeated attacks in Yemen. Human rights organizations have urged Macron to insist that Saudi Arabia lift a blockade of Yemeni access points that has prevented humanitarian aid from entering to help civilians.

The U.N. recorded more than 13,000 civilian casualties in the conflict in Yemen between 2015 and 2017, and nearly 22 million people are in need of aid this year. More than 8 million people in the country don't know how they will get their next meal, U.N. Secretary General Antonio Guterres said last week. Guterres has called the war in Yemen the worst humanitarian crisis in the world and requested increased funding and improved access to aid Yemeni citizens.