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Donald Trump vetoes resolution to end U.S. involvement in Yemen war

17 April 2019

President Donald Trump has vetoed a congressional resolution to end America's involvement in the Saudi-led war in Yemen.

Calling it "unnecessary, unsafe attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities", Mr Trump struck down the resolution that was passed by a majority of lawmakers in the House and Senate this year.

Tuesday's veto was the second of Trump's presidency.

"In addition, the conflict in Yemen represents a "cheap" and low-cost way for Iran to cause trouble for the United States and for our ally, Saudi Arabia", Mr. Trump said.

Several supporters made clear their votes were also aimed at expressing their frustrations with Trump's continued support for Saudi Arabia's Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, who has been implicated in the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi.

At the same time, Trump continues to want to keep strong ties with Saudi Arabia and does not share the view of Congress that the kingdom needs to be punished for the killing of Khashoggi, aides said.

"Congressional engagement in those endeavors would be far more productive than expending time and effort trying to enact this unnecessary and risky resolution that interferes with our foreign policy with respect to Yemen", he said. In the Senate the vote was 54 to 46, with seven Republicans voting with Democrats.

"We can not end the conflict in Yemen through political documents like S.J. Res. 7", Mr. Trump said.

"This conflict must end, now".

U.S. President Donald Trump (L) shakes hands with Speaker of the U.S. House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi during the State of the Union address at the U.S. Capitol in Washington, D.C., on February 5, 2019.

The vetoed resolution called "direct the removal of United States Armed Forces from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen that have not been authorized by Congress". The Norwegian Refugee Council said Wednesday that if Trump "was truly concerned about civilian life", he would "ensure that the US-supported Saudi-led coalition stop breaking the laws of war and depriving millions of Yemenis of life-saving assistance".

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. McCaul said it was an abuse of the War Powers Resolution and predicted it could disrupt USA security co-operation agreements with more than 100 countries.

But Trump vetoed the measure on Wednesday with the Congress lacking the votes to override him.

International Rescue Committee president and CEO David Miliband said that vetoing the measure represents an "effective green light for the war strategy that has created the world's worst humanitarian crisis to continue".

Donald Trump vetoes resolution to end U.S. involvement in Yemen war