Airstrikes Hit Médecins Sans Frontières Hospital in Yemen

Updated | Medical charity Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) says one of its hospitals in Yemen was hit by airstrikes late on Monday while workers and patients were present inside the facility.

Warplanes from a Saudi-led coalition are bombing Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen, including in the northwestern city of Sa'ada, a Houthi stronghold where the hospital is located. Analysts say the Houthis have not carried out any airstrikes since the beginning of the Saudi operation, although they have fired Scud missiles.

"Our facility in Saada Yemen was hit by several airstrikes last night with patients & staff inside the facility," MSF wrote on Twitter.

The strikes wounded several people inside the hospital, Ali Mughli, the director of the hospital told Yemen's state news agency Saba, in quotes carried by Reuters. The first strike hit an empty part of the building, giving time for those inside to flee before another hit the maternity ward.

.@MSF first photos for its health facility in Haydan #Saada after the airstrikes that took place last night. #Yemen pic.twitter.com/PUFEF0Yiq5

— MSF Yemen (@msf_yemen) October 27, 2015

"The air raids resulted in the destruction of the entire hospital with all that was inside—devices and medical supplies—and the moderate wounding of several people," Mughli said.

MSF country director Hassan Boucenine told Reuters that the strike was a war crime regardless of whether it was a mistake. "There's no reason to target a hospital. We provided [the coalition] with all of our GPS coordinates about two weeks ago," he said.

A representative for the coalition could not be reached to comment on the incident.

Earlier this month, American forces conducted an airstrike on an MSF hospital in the Afghan city of Kunduz that killed at least 22 people. U.S. President Barack Obama apologized for the strike but the aid group has called for an independent investigation into the incident.

MSF, also known as Doctors Without Borders, is one of the only international aid organizations that has retained a thorough operation in Yemen.

.@MSF facility in #Saada #Yemen was hit by several airstrikes last night with patients & staff inside the facility. pic.twitter.com/MicfUT571V

— MSF Yemen (@msf_yemen) October 27, 2015

Saudi Arabia is leading a coalition of Arab states in Yemen against the Iranian-backed Shiite Houthi rebels who forced President Abd-Rabbo Mansour Hadi to flee his southern stronghold of Aden in March.

The coalition, which has conducted a bombing campaign in Yemen for nine months, is attempting to recapture the Houthi-controlled city of Sana'a, Yemen's capital. Both the U.K. and the U.S. are supporting the coalition with arms supplies and intelligence. Jordan Perry, principal Middle East and North Africa analyst at U.K.-based risk consultancy Verisk Maplecroft says that the Houthis have not carried out any airstrikes since the beginning of the Saudi operation, although they have launched surface-to-air missiles including Scuds.

The U.N. estimates that the death toll from fighting and airstrikes across Yemen, between March and September, stands at 2,355, the global body's human rights chief said last month.

Updated: This article was updated to include a input from Jordan Perry.