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Protests, Fury After US Drone Strike Kills 13 Civilians in Yemen

Common Dreams staff

Protests have erupted in Yemen after a U.S. drone strike killed 13 civilians on Sunday.

Agence France-Presse reports that three women and a child were among the dead in the strike near the town of Radaa, about 80 miles from the capital of Sanaa.

"This was one of the very few times when our target was completely missed. It was a mistake, but we hope it will not hurt our anti-terror efforts in the region," an unnamed senior Yemeni Defense Ministry official told CNN.

Furious family members of the killed attempted to bring the corpses to the residence of President Abdurabu Hadi, but were thwarted by security forces, CNN adds.

"You want us to stay quiet while our wives and brothers are being killed for no reason. This attack is the real terrorism," Mansoor al-Maweri, who was near the strike, told CNN.

Xinhua news reports that a massive demonstration denouning the U.S.' death by drone campaign in Yemen took place on Monday, with protesters including youth activists and "prominent tribal leaders." They held signs saying "No for killing innocent people" and "End alliance with the U.S government."

The U.S. has stated that the U.S.-Yemen alliance is strong.  In a statement, Obama's top counterterrorism adviser John "Brennan and President Hadi reaffirmed the unshakable partnership between Yemen and the United States, and President Hadi pledged not to let terrorist acts interfere with Yemen’s peaceful political transition."

CNN reports on words of warning from an activist in Yemen:

"I would not be surprised if a hundred tribesmen joined the lines of al Qaeda as a result of the latest drone mistake," Nasr Abdullah, an activist in the district of the attack, told CNN. "This part of Yemen takes revenge very seriously."

Reporting from the Bureau of Investigative Journalism shows at least 50 U.S. drones strikes in Yemen since 2002.

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