|Meqdad Tuaiman with his children. His father and his 17-year-old brother were killed in a drone strike in 2011, after going to look for missing camels. Photograph: The National Organisation for Drone Victims|
The drones used to hover about once a week over al-Rawdah, the Yemeni village where the family lives, sending children running for cover.
Now, according to Meqdad Tuaiman, the drones come every day – sometimes three or four times.
Usually they arrive in the afternoon. Other times they come after sundown and linger until sunrise.
The drones have not fired their weapons in four months, but their patrols have intensified since late January, when Trump took office. Meqdad, a 24-year-old used-car salesman and occasional pipeline guard, considers it no coincidence.
In 2014, the Guardian gave Meqdad’s 13-year-old brother a camera to record his daily life. In January 2015, he too was killed in a drone strike.
US drone strikes in Yemen are a key part of the campaign against al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula (AQAP), but the Tuaiman family denies any links to terrorism and say the family has never received any explanation from either US authorities or their Yemeni government allies.
According to Meqdad, his brother Ezzaldeen has started to say: “They’re going to kill me next.”
Under the Trump administration, airstrikes have escalated dramatically in Iraq and Syria, sending claims of civilian casualties skyrocketing.
Read more: https://www.theguardian.com/world/2017/mar/30/yemen-drone-strikes-trump-escalate