78 people were killed and many more injured in a stampede during a financial aid distribution event in Yemen’s capital on Wednesday night, according to a spokesperson for the Houthi-run Interior Ministry.
The incident occurred in the Old City of Sanaa, where a large group of people had congregated for the event organized by local merchants.
The spokesperson, Brig. Abdel-Khaleq al-Aghri, attributed the tragedy to the random distribution of funds without coordination with local authorities.
Eyewitnesses said that armed Houthis fired shots in the air, causing an electrical wire to explode and triggering a stampede.
The Houthi-run Interior Ministry has detained two organizers and launched an investigation.
Yemen’s capital has been under Houthi control since 2014, prompting the intervention of a Saudi-led coalition in 2015 to restore the internationally recognized government.
The conflict has evolved into a proxy war between Saudi Arabia and Iran, with more than 150,000 deaths and the creation of one of the world’s worst humanitarian disasters in recent years. (Jowhar wth AP)