US House Passes Resolution to End Involvement in Yemen War

Boys hold a large piece of twisted metal near homes that were destroyed in an air strike in Okash Village near Sana’a the capital of Yemen in 2017

Boys hold a large piece of twisted metal near homes that were destroyed in an air strike in Okash Village near Sana’a the capital of Yemen in 2017

Thirteen Republicans joined 235 Democrats in the House late on Wednesday in voting a bill under the War Powers Act that effectively puts an end to United States military role in Yemen.

In a sharp rebuke to the Trump administration, the House passed a bipartisan resolution that would limit American military assistance to the Saudi-led coalition waging a bloody war against the Iranian-backed Houthi rebels in Yemen.

The Democratic-led House on Wednesday voted 248 to 177 to approve the measure, which will now go to the Senate.

It was the first time the House of Representatives has ever supported a war powers resolution, but the 248-177 vote - nearly entirely along party lines - would not be enough, however, to overcome Trump's promise to issue what would likely be his first veto. A parallel resolution was passed by the Senate late past year in a 56-to-41 vote. The administration missed a February 7 reporting deadline stemming from the Global Magnitsky Act, which gave President Trump 120 days to make a determination and state whether the USA would sanction anyone deemed responsible for the murder.

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Democrats and Republicans reintroduced the war powers resolution two weeks ago as a way to send a strong message to Riyadh about the humanitarian disaster in Yemen and condemn the killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

Since 2015, the administration says, the USA has provided support to the coalition, including intelligence and, until recently, aerial refueling, but it has not had forces involved in "hostilities".

Concerning the bill's potential impact on Yemen, Mr Heras argued that "this resolution will accomplish nothing to end hostilities between Saudi Arabia and the Houthis, and in fact, it may backfire".

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