Trump vetoes bill to end US support for Yemen war

10:44 PM | 17 Apr, 2019
Trump vetoes bill to end US support for Yemen war
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WASHINGTON - US President Donald Trump vetoed a bill passed by Congress to end support for the Saudi-led war in Yemen on Tuesday.

The president dubbed the resolution "unnecessary" and "dangerous" attempt to weaken his constitutional powers; Trump's veto was the exercise of his power for the second time since he assumed charge in 2017.

"This resolution is an unnecessary, dangerous attempt to weaken my constitutional authorities, endangering the lives of American citizens and brave service members, both today and in the future," Trump said.

The resolution passed the House of Representatives in April and the Senate in March and was aimed at curtailing a president's war-making powers -  limiting the president's ability to send troops into action.

Supporting his decision, Trump argued that US support for the war between the Saudi-backed Yemeni government and Iran-aligned Huthi rebels was necessary to "protect the safety of the more than 80,000 Americans who reside in certain coalition countries."

Trump's exercise of veto power irked his rivals including House Speaker, Democrat Nancy Pelosi, who equated the move with perpetuating 'America's shameful involvement in this heartbreaking crisis'.

In another tweet, Pelosi said this [Yemen] conflict must end now.

On the other hand, Huthi rebels slammed Trump's veto of the resolution and said Washington was behind the conflict.

The veto “proves that the United States is not only involved in the war on Yemen but also was behind the decision to go to war,” Huthi spokesman Mohammed Abdelsalam tweeted.

Opposition in Congress to Trump's on Yemen escalated last year after Saudi hitmen killed journalist Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul for which the Crown prince Mohammed bin Salman was also blamed though he denies the allegations altogether.

The conflict in Yemen escalated in 2015 and UN estimates that at least 7,000 civilians have been killed in the country with air strikes by the Saudi-led coalition contributing 65% to the casualties.

The US has provided billions of dollars of weapons and intelligence to the coalition over a couple of years.