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''We call on the parties involved in the conflict in Dammaj and elsewhere in Sa'ada and neighbouring governorates to protect and care for the wounded, the sick and all those not, or no longer, taking part in hostilities," said Cedric Schweizer, head of the ICRC delegation in Sana'a. "They must at all times respect the lives and dignity of all persons arrested or detained in connection with the ongoing conflict by either party, regardless of whether those persons are fighters or civilians."
The ICRC has repeatedly requested access to Dammaj since its most recent humanitarian operation on 24 November, and stands ready to enter Dammaj immediately to evacuate the sick and the wounded, provided it is able to carry out its work in an impartial manner and without preconditions of any kind.
Civilians must be protected at all times and must not be targeted. The parties involved in the fighting in Saada and its neighbouring governorates must take all feasible precautions to avoid harming them. Those who wish to leave for safer areas must be allowed to do so. Those who choose to stay, or who are unable to leave, remain protected by international humanitarian law. The wounded â civilians and combatants alike â must receive medical care as promptly as possible. Fighters who have surrendered or been captured must not be harmed and must be treated humanely.
For further information, please contact:Marie Claire Feghali, ICRC Sana'a, tel: +967 73 607 19 67or visit our website: www.icrc.org