Blast in Sana’a kills another 14 children in school and injures 16, most under the age of nine

More than 400 children killed and seriously injured since beginning of 2019

09 April 2019

Statement from Geert Cappelaere, UNICEF Regional Director for the Middle East and North Africa


SANA’A/AMMAN, 9 April 2019 – “A blast in Sana’a this week killed 14 children and critically injured 16. This is what UNICEF was able to verify, with the actual number of children killed and injured likely to increase.
“The critically injured children, many of whom are fighting for their lives, are now in hospitals in Sana’a. Most are under the age of nine. One girl succumbed to her injuries yesterday morning.
“The incident occurred near two schools.
“It was almost lunchtime and students were in class. The blast shattered the windows and unleashed a burst of shrapnel and broken glass into the classrooms.
“It is hard to imagine the sheer horror that those children experienced – and the sheer horror and guilt parents may feel for having done what every parent aspires to: sending their children to school.
“Killing and maiming children are grave violations of children’s rights.
“Yesterday’s blast is another reminder that even schools are not safe in Yemen. One in five schools can no longer be used as a direct result of the conflict. Some came under direct attack, while others are being used for military purposes. For more than 2 million children in Yemen today, going to school is a faraway dream! Yesterday’s blast may further discourage parents to send their children to school.
“In the past 24 hours, UNICEF mobilized lifesaving assistance to affected children and families, including providing psychosocial support, covering surgery and medical treatment costs and giving assistance to families for travel to be with their children as they receive care.”

Media Contacts

Juliette Touma

Chief of Communication

UNICEF Middle East and North Africa Regional Office

Tel: 00962798674628

Tamara Kummer

Communications Specialist

UNICEF Middle East and North Africa

Tel: +962 797 588 550

Thaiza Castilho


Tel: 00967712223001


UNICEF promotes the rights and wellbeing of every child, in everything we do. Together with our partners, we work in 190 countries and territories to translate that commitment into practical action, focusing special effort on reaching the most vulnerable and excluded children, to the benefit of all children, everywhere.

For more information about UNICEF and its work for children, visit

Follow UNICEF on Twitter and Facebook


NEW: Join our UNICEF MENA WhatsApp group to get the latest news. Send us a text message at the following number and we'll add you to our list: +962790082531