The Husi movement was blacklisted as a terrorist organization by the State Department on Jan. 19
The United States has removed the Yemeni Hussite movement from the list of terrorist organizations in connection with the humanitarian crisis in Yemen. In doing so, the new administration reversed one of the decisions made by Donald Trump in the final days of his presidency that had been criticized.
A State Department spokesman confirmed that the Houthis were delisted as terrorists a day after President Joe Biden announced the end of U.S. support for the Saudi-led military campaign in Yemen. Many view the civil war in Yemen as mediated by the conflict between Saudi Arabia and Iran, which supports the Houthis.
“Our actions are entirely driven by the humanitarian consequences of this last-minute decision by the previous administration, which the UN and humanitarian organizations have made clear will exacerbate the worst humanitarian crisis in the world,” the State Department spokesman said.
According to the UN, Yemen is now facing the world’s largest humanitarian crisis. Up to 80 percent of the country’s population is in need of urgent aid.
Former U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo blacklisted the Houthis as terrorist organizations on Jan. 19, the day before Joe Biden took office.
The Trump administration has authorized aid to Yemen from humanitarian organizations, the UN, the Red Cross, and exporters of agricultural goods, medicine, and medical devices. But the UN and humanitarian groups said this was clearly not enough, calling for a complete reversal of the decision to recognize the Houthis as terrorists.
The State Department spokesman stressed that these actions do not mean that the U.S. has changed its view on the “reprehensible behavior” of Hussein.
A Saudi-led military coalition invaded Yemen in 2015, supporting government forces fighting the Iranian-backed Houthis. The UN is trying to resume peace talks between the official government and the Houthis as the country faces an economic crisis and the COVID-19 pandemic.
Democratic Senator Chris Murphy welcomed the decision.
“The (Trump administration’s) decision … stopped the delivery of food and other important aid to Yemen and would have prevented effective political negotiations,” Murphy said in a statement.
Translated with www.DeepL.com/Translator (free version)