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PRESS RELEASE


House Passes Amendments Blocking U.S. Military Participation in Saudi War in Yemen

July 15, 2017 (EIRNS)—The U.S. House of Representatives yesterday approved two amendments to the fiscal 2018 National Defense Authorization Act that are aimed at stopping U.S. military involvement in the Saudi war on Yemen.

The first amendment, sponsored by Rep. Warren Davidson (R-Ohio), prohibits U.S. military action in Yemen not authorized by the 2001 Authorization for Use of Military Force, which was aimed at the authors of the 9/11 attacks and al-Qaeda more generally, and does not cover U.S. involvement in the Saudi war in Yemen.

The second amendment, sponsored by Rep. Rick Nolan (D-Minn.) prohibits the deployment of U.S. troops to participation in Yemen’s civil war.

Both amendments were approved by a voice vote and would block the provision of air refueling to fighter jets from Saudi Arabia and the U.A.E. on bombing missions in Yemen.

Davidson, in a statement issued afterwards, said that his amendment ensures U.S. forces remain focused on the Congressionally authorized war against al-Qaeda, not fighting in the Yemeni civil war.

"We owe it to our troops to give them clear missions and the tools to accomplish them. Involving our military in a war against Houthi forces without Congressional authorization is out of the bounds of our Constitutional framework for making war. It also commits our soldiers and defense resources to ill-defined missions that do not support our national security,"

said Davidson.

The House vote came only days after the High Court of London ruled that British arms sales to the Saudis are perfectly legal, despite the humanitarian consequences of the Saudi war. The case was brought by the Campaign Against the Arms Trade pressure group, which argued that U.K. arms should not be sold to Saudi Arabia as there was a clear risk of the arms being used to target civilians and violate human rights in war-torn Yemen, reports Sputnik.

The defense bill passed the full House by a vote of 344 to 81 shortly after the amendments were taken care of and it now goes to the Senate, where a resolution to block U.S. arms sales to Saudi Arabia was only narrowly defeated by a 47-53 vote on June 13.