Trump Vetoes Bill To Pull U.S. Troops From Yemen

Clay Curtis
April 17, 2019

"There are no United States military personnel in Yemen commanding, participating in, or accompanying military forces of the Saudi-led coalition against the Houthis in hostilities in or affecting Yemen", he said in his veto message.

These countries "have been subject to Huthi attacks from Yemen", he said, referring to drone and missile strikes the Saudi-led coalition has either claimed were intercepted or denied altogether.

Trump's first veto, issued last month, was of a congressional resolution disapproving of his emergency declaration.

The move marked the second time that Trump has used his veto power to reject a bill from the legislature.

President Trump with Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman past year.

But as the war drags on, members of Congress have expressed concern about the thousands of civilians killed in coalition airstrikes since the conflict began in 2014.

The president also said that the measure would harm bilateral relations and interferes with his constitutional power as commander in chief.

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The House of Representatives passed the resolution to end military support in a 247-175 vote this month after the Senate approved it last month, by 54 to 46, with the backing of seven Republicans.

The four-year-long civil war in Yemen, which pits the Saudi-led coalition against Houthi rebels backed by Iran, has killed tens of thousands of people and spawned what the United Nations calls the world's most dire humanitarian crisis, with the country on the brink of starvation.

The conflict has killed tens of thousands of people and spawned what the United Nations calls the world's most dire humanitarian crisis, with the country on the brink of starvation.

Supporters of the War Powers Resolution argued the USA shouldn't be involved in the war without explicit permission from Congress. Opponents argued the USA does not have "boots on the ground" and is offering noncombat technical assistance to Saudi Arabia, an ally. "Yet the President has cynically chosen to contravene a bipartisan, bicameral vote of the Congress & perpetuate America's shameful involvement in this heartbreaking crisis". "I hope my colleagues will show we won't tolerate the Trump administration's deference to Saudi Arabia at the expense of American security interests by voting to override this veto", Kaine said.

Since less than two-thirds of either chamber voted to approve the resolution in the first place, there's little chance that the veto could be overturned.

The only other veto Trump has issued was his veto of a resolution of disapproval for his emergency declaration to build barriers along the United States border with Mexico.

Backers of the measure said the Saudi-led bombing campaign in Yemen had made the humanitarian crisis worse, harshly criticizing Riyadh for killing civilians.

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