Inhofe, Senators Lead Effort for Congress to Condemn the Houthi Movement in Yemen

U.S. Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), Tom Cotton (R-Ark.), Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), Mike Braun (R-Ind.), John Cornyn (R-Texas), Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and Marco Rubio (R-Fla.) introduced a concurrent resolution condemning the Houthi movement in Yemen for human rights violations, violence against civilians and its ties to Iran. U.S. Representatives Will Hurd (TX-23) and Michael McCaul (TX-10) introduced companion legislation in the House of Representatives.

“The Houthis’ armed takeover of Yemen in 2014-2015 ignited that country’s horrific civil war, and, today, Yemen is the scene of the world’s most dire humanitarian crisis.  The Houthis are also responsible for documented human rights violations and attacks on commercial shipping, U.S. warships, and civilians in the region,” said Inhofe. “The Iranian regime backs them for the sole purpose of undermining our partners’ security and ours, and I am proud to join this resolution to strongly condemn the Houthis’ activities.”

“The Houthi rebels have plunged Yemen into a brutal civil war at the bidding of Iran’s ayatollahs. The United States ought to formally condemn the Houthis for their terrorist attacks on American sailors and innocent civilians. By their actions, the Houthis condemn themselves as terrorists and outlaws from the civilized world,” said Cotton.

“The Houthis regularly commit abhorrent acts of terror,” said Blackburn. “Their actions need to be formally condemned and Iran, the world’s most egregious state-sponsor of terror, should be held accountable for supporting the harm they inflict. I join my colleagues in calling out the Houthis for the terrorists they are – this is necessary for moving toward peace in Yemen.”

“The U.S. must remain clear-eyed about the threat to millions of innocent people and the security of the region posed by the Houthis and their backers in Tehran,” said Hurd. “I am proud to stand with my colleagues to introduce this resolution that condemns the Houthis for their blatant disregard for human rights and innocent life and supports the efforts of the UN Special Envoy to end the Yemeni Civil War.”

The resolution would:

  • Condemn the Houthis for a series of documented violations of human rights and attacks on commercial shipping, U.S. warships, and civilians in both Yemen and Saudi Arabia;
  • Express concern about Iranian influence in Yemen;
  • Urge the Houthis and other parties in the Yemeni Civil War to uphold the terms of the December 2018 Stockholm agreement; and,
  • Urge the U.S. government to support a peace process that ends the civil war and humanitarian crisis while preventing Iran and terrorist groups, like al-Qaida and ISIS, from gaining a permanent foothold on the Arabian Peninsula.

The resolution also highlights a series of nefarious actions by the Houthis against the Yemeni people, Saudi civilians, the U.S. military and others, including:

  • The launch of multiple cruise missiles at U.S. Navy warships in international waters in October 2016;
  • The shooting down of a U.S. MQ-9 Reaper drone over Yemen on June 6;
  • Attacks in 2018 on Saudi oil tankers and a wheat ship in the Red Sea and Bab-el-Mandeb Strait;
  • The Houthis’ extensive use of land mines, which has killed and maimed hundreds of civilians and cut off entire communities from their crops, clean water, and humanitarian aid;
  • The continued imprisonment of 16 journalists, including 10 who could be executed following years of torture and starvation; and,
  • Two missile and drone attacks in June 2019 that killed 1 civilian and injured 47 others at Abha International Airport in southern Saudi Arabia.

The full text of the resolution can be found here.