March 27 (UPI) -- A hospital in Yemen supported by Save the Children was hit by an airstrike, killing seven people and injuring eight others, the NGO said.
Four children were among the dead and two adults were still unaccounted for following a missile striking a gas station near the entrance to the Kitaf rural hospital at about 9:30 a.m. Tuesday, the organization said.
Save the Children said the hospital had only opened a half hour earlier and was attacked as patients and staff were arriving during the busy morning.
Nearby buildings including a pharmacy were destroyed in the blast.
Carolyn Miles, president and CEO of Save the Children, called the attack "a breach of international law."
"We are shocked and appalled by this outrageous attack," she said in a statement. "Innocent children and health workers have lost their lives in what appears to have been an indiscriminate attack on a hospital in a densely populated civilian area."
Also among the dead were a health worker and her two children as well as a security guard, it said.
"These children have the right to be safe in their hospitals, schools and homes," she said. "But time after time, we see a complete disregard by all warring parties in Yemen for the basic rules of war."
Last week Save the Children reported that last year, 37 children a month had been killed or injured by foreign bombs.
It is demanding an urgent investigation into this most recent attack.
The attack also coincided with the fourth anniversary of the start of the civil war between the internationally recognized government of Yemeni President Abdu Rabbo Mansour Hadi and the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels.
The United Nation has called the humanitarian crisis created by the civil war "the world's worst" as some 24 million people, or 80 percent of the population, need assistance.
Save the Children is calling for full diplomatic pressure to be applied to both parties to resolve the conflict and for those who commit violations of international law to be held accountable.
"Children must be protected," Miles said. "We must stop this war on children."