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Senate Demands Trump End US Support for War in Yemen

Senate Demands Trump End US Support for War in Yemen

Yemen's rebels on Thursday welcomed the U.S. Senate vote to end America's support for their adversary, the Saudi-led coalition, which has been fighting the rebels in the impoverished Arab country.

The lawmakers in the Republican-controlled chamber voted with a 54 to 46 majority, thus approving the presidential war powers which direct President Trump "to remove the United States Armed Forces from hostilities in or affecting the Republic of Yemen" within 30 days. "Now that the new Senate has passed the resolution, the House needs to pass the same clean version of the resolution to finally send it to the president's desk".

In this February 12, 2018, photo, Saudi-led coalition forces are seen in Yemen.

The White House has threatened to veto the bill, arguing that United States support for the Saudi coalition does not amount to "hostilities".

But its full passage would set a historic marker. Indeed, a lead sponsor of Wednesday's Senate bill was Sen.

"Today, we begin the process of reclaiming our constitutional power by ending U.S. involvement in a war that has not been authorized by Congress and is clearly unconstitutional", Senator Bernie Sanders, who is a presidential candidature for the 2020 elections, said on the Senate floor.

"Most of the advocacy around this war in the USA has focused on what we want the U.S.to stop doing - refuelling, selling arms, blocking Security Council actions, etc. ..."

But when the House passed the resolution last month, an amendment offered by Rep. Ken Buck, R-Colo., exempted intelligence sharing from the bill. The Saudis are likely using our own weapons... to commit these atrocities of war.

The war in Yemen is the world's worst humanitarian crisis, with an estimated 14 million people at risk of starvation.

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"Today, we begin the process of reclaiming our constitutional power by ending USA involvement in a war that has not been authorized by Congress and is clearly unconstitutional", said independent Senator Bernie Sanders, sponsor of the measure.

"The bottom line is the United States should not be supporting a catastrophic war led by a despotic regime with a risky and irresponsible foreign policy", Mr. Sanders said.

McConnell argued the Yemen resolution "will not enhance America's diplomatic leverage" and will make it more hard for the U.S.to help end the conflict in Yemen and minimize civilian casualties. But it is significant and important that Congress - both houses of Congress - will have voted to rebuke Trump's abuses of power.

The US Senate approved SJ Res 7 on Wednesday that calls for the removal of US military from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen.

Trump's support for Saudi Arabia came under the spotlight after the brutal killing of US -based Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi past year.

The Senate earlier blamed Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman for the death of the journalist and expressed concerns over Trump's lax response on the issue.

"I would urge my colleagues to vote against this at this time and give peace a chance through the negotiations", said Sen.

"We will determine our military and foreign pol and not be led around by a murderous regime", he said.