US newspaper: Congress is moving to reclassify the Houthis as a terrorist group

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An American newspaper revealed moves for Congress to re-implement sanctions on the Iran-backed Houthi rebels that were dismantled by the Biden administration, just days after hard-line militias stormed the US embassy compound in Yemen, where they stole equipment and kidnapped local employees.

And the American newspaper, “Washington Free Beacon”, said that Republicans in Congress are laying the groundwork for reclassifying the Houthis as a terrorist group.

She noted that Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas), has distributed the sanctions measure to other Senate offices, and will formally introduce sanctions language as an amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, which is expected to be adopted by the Senate this week.

According to the journalist. The amendment comes after months of backsliding between Cruz and the Biden administration on the issue, including an attempt by the senator to pressure the State Department to clarify its decision to reduce sanctions against the Houthis.

in the House of Representatives,

She said Representative Andrew Clyde (R., Georgia) pushed in the US House of Representatives legislation to rename the Houthis as a foreign terrorist organization in response to the blockade in the last week of the US Embassy compound in Sanaa.

And the newspaper suggested that these measures have the support of the Republican Party on a large scale in light of the raid on the embassy, ​​which angered the Republican foreign policy leaders in both houses.

She confirmed that foreign policy leaders, Republicans and Democrats, promised the consequences of the embassy strike shortly after it occurred last week.

The Houthis, who have been fighting a bloody war in Yemen, have been designated a foreign terrorist organization and were added by the outgoing Trump administration to a specially designated global terrorist list in January. These designations were removed almost immediately in February, when President Joe Biden took office, and his State Department alleged that the sanctions interfered with humanitarian efforts in Yemen. The Biden administration also withdrew its arms support for the Saudi Arabia-led coalition that helps the Yemeni government fight the Houthis, who are armed and financed by Iran.

The Biden administration’s decision to impose sanctions on the Houthis is seen as part of a broader effort to reopen diplomacy with Iran and persuade Houthi fighters to engage in peace talks centered around ending Yemen’s civil war. Almost immediately after the Biden administration lifted sanctions, the Houthis launched a military attack on the city of Marib, sent armed drones into Saudi Arabia, and increased their extrajudicial killings — which include attacks on civilians, journalists, and children.

The Houthis escalated their attacks on Wednesday, when they stormed the US embassy in Yemen and stole “large amounts of equipment and materials”. The attacks followed the kidnapping of several Yemeni nationals who worked at the US embassy, ​​which ceased operations in 2015 as the war spread in the country. While Americans were withdrawn from the country at the time, Yemeni nationals continued to be employed on tasks related to US interests, including guarding embassy grounds.

Republican lawmakers say the Biden administration’s decision to lift sanctions on the Houthis encouraged them and sent a message to Iran that an increase in terrorist strikes would not attract a tough response from the US administration.

Cruz’s sanctions measures, introduced as a last-minute amendment to the National Defense Authorization Act, mirror the Biden administration’s actions and re-apply sanctions against the Houthis as an organization, as well as the group’s officials, agents, and affiliates.

While the Biden administration opposes sanctions, both sides would like to see the consequences of the Houthi raid. Senator Bob Menendez (D.D., NJ), chair of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, joined with Representative Gregory Mix (D.D., New York) and Senator Jim Risch (R., Idaho) in condemning the Houthi advance and the “promised consequences” of the attack.

The Clyde Scale is a separate bill that includes language similar to the Senate version. It was introduced in June, but Clyde is circulating the bill in light of the Houthi raid on the US Embassy facility. He is lobbying House Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D., California) to immediately bring the legislation to a vote.

“I appeal to all of my colleagues – Republicans and Democrats – to respond to Wednesday’s breach by supporting my legislation and recognizing the Houthis for what they are – a terrorist organization,” Clyde said in a statement. “The United States must demonstrate strength, not weakness, and thus further empower Iran. The administration must respond quickly to Houthi aggression and return the hostages to safety.”

The majority of the Yemenis kidnapped by the Houthis were security personnel who were guarding the US embassy compound. The US State Department told the Free Beacon newspaper on Thursday that the Yemeni workers were “arrested without explanation” and that the administration “has not stopped its diplomatic efforts to secure their release.” The State Department also said it was “concerned about the infiltration of the compound” and called on the Houthis “to evacuate it immediately and return all confiscated property.”

The Houthis have launched hundreds of attacks since the Biden administration removed them from the US terror list. There have been at least 11 attacks this month alone, including several ballistic missile attacks and kidnappings of Yemenis working for the United States. The Houthis carried out nearly 30 attacks in October and every two months in 2021.



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