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US’ Pentagon, Congress disagree on support for Saudi coalition in Yemen

Image of members from the Houthi Ansarullah Movement members in Sanaa, Yemen on August 25 2016 [file photo]
Members from the Houthi Ansarullah Movement in Sanaa, Yemen on August 25 2016 [file photo]

US Pentagon has confirmed its continued support for Saudi Arabia in its war on the Houthis in Yemen while Congress has agreed to discuss a draft resolution which demands the cessation of American support for the Arab Coalition.

The statements show differences and contradictions in the American vision between the Pentagon and Congress about whether or not to support the forces of the Arab Coalition.

The Pentagon welcomed the Saudi statement that reveal the role of Iran in Yemen and its “involvement” in the support of Houthi militants and in supplying them with ballistic missiles, in a statement issued yesterday by spokesman Adrian Rankin-Galloway.

“The United States and Saudi Arabia are working together to combat terrorism and confront Iran’s destabilising role in the region,” the Pentagon said, stressing that it seeks to maintain “strong defence ties” with Riyadh.

Read: Will US try to impose democracy on Saudi?

This comes after the coalition yesterday issued a statement explaining Tehran’s “involvement” in supplying the Houthis with ballistic missiles that targeted Saudi Arabia. It said that it was “a dangerous and direct military aggression by the Iranian regime, which may amount to being considered as an act of war against the Kingdom.”

“Saudi Arabia reserves the right to respond to Iran, which is guaranteed by international law, at the right time and form,” the statement added.

This came two days after the interception of a ballistic missile launched by Houthi militants targeting Riyadh airport, in an incident met with Arab and Islamic condemnation.

On its part, the US House of Representatives approved the discussion of a draft resolution which demands the cessation of US support for the coalition led by Saudi Arabia in the war against the militias and the forces of ousted Yemeni President Ali Abdullah Saleh.

The draft resolution calls for a halt to US military and intelligence support to Saudi Arabia and its allies in the war. The draft also requires Congress’ prior approval for any US involvement in military operations in Yemen.

US newspapers reported last month that congressional deputies had introduced a bill backed by bipartisan (Republican and Democratic) deputies to stop US support for the Saudi-led military campaign.

UN officials have said the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen has created the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.

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Asia & AmericasIranMiddle EastNewsSaudi ArabiaUSYemen
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