DUBAI/PARIS—The international medical humanitarian organization Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) received 63 wounded patients at its hospital in Aden, Yemen, on March 19 following heavy armed clashes in the city.
Fighting between forces loyal to President Abed Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the Special Security Forces, a unit loyal to Yemen's former president Ali Abdullah Saleh, erupted in Aden in the early hours of March 19 and continued throughout the day around Aden International Airport, forcing its temporary closure.
Most patients treated in MSF’s emergency surgical unit were suffering from gunshot wounds, with 12 requiring urgent surgery.
Ambulances reportedly faced difficulties reaching patients due to the fighting. One Ministry of Health ambulance transporting a patient was caught in crossfire on its way to the MSF hospital, although there were no casualties in the incident.
"We may receive more patients and it is all the more crucial that all parties to the conflict facilitate unhindered access of patients and ambulances to health structures, including to MSF's emergency unit," said Dounia Dekhili, manager of MSF's programs in Yemen.
MSF has worked in Yemen since 1986 and currently has activities in Sana’a, Amran, and Al-Dhale governorates. MSF started a program in 2014 to rapidly respond to emergencies throughout the country.