News Release

Will Congress Stop the Worst Humanitarian Crisis, the Saudi Attack on Yemen?


A just-published piece in Forbes, “Time to End the Forgotten War in Yemen,” states: “The scenes of carnage in Ukraine have sparked anger and concerted action against the Russian invasion of that country, now in its eighth week. But there is another conflict, now in its eighth year, that has resulted in the deaths of nearly half a million people and driven millions more to the brink of starvation — the war in Yemen. And unlike the war in Ukraine, where Washington faces daunting obstacles in attempting to end Russian atrocities, the United States has considerable leverage in bringing the Yemen conflict to an end, and soon.

“The current war in Yemen began with the March 2015 Saudi/UAE-led intervention aimed at defeating the indigenous Houthi movement and restoring the prior regime to power. The Saudi leadership, led by then defense minister and current Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman, promised a short war. Instead, the intervention has sparked the worst humanitarian crisis in the world, with non-combatants suffering the vast bulk of the casualties due to Saudi air strikes and a smothering air and sea blockade that has reduced imports of fuel and humanitarian aid that are essential to run hospitals and provide essential provisions to Yemenis.”

Dr. Jumaan is president of the Yemen Relief and Reconstruction Foundation and is quoted in the Forbes piece. She is in transit for the next day but is generally available for interviews.

Hakim is chair of the Yemeni Alliance Committee.

The two groups — along with 70 others — have signed a letter to Congress: “Congress must reassert its Article I war powers, terminate U.S. involvement in Saudi Arabia’s war and blockade, and do everything it can to support the Yemen truce. Our organizations look forward to the introduction of the Yemen War Powers Resolution. We urge all members of Congress to say ‘no’ to Saudi Arabia’s war of aggression by fully ending all U.S. support for a conflict that has caused such immense bloodshed and human suffering. …

    “In Yemen today, roughly 20.7 million people are in need of humanitarian aid for survival, with up to 19 million Yemenis acutely food insecure.  A new report indicates that 2.2 million children under the age of five are expected to suffer from acute malnutrition over the course of 2022 and could perish without urgent treatment.”

    Jumaan told Forbes: “The fragile truce between the Saudi-led coalition and Ansar Allah [the Houthis] is a golden opportunity for the Biden administration to push for an end to Saudi Arabia’s brutal war and war crimes against the Yemeni people.”

  She added: “The War Powers Resolution is essential to make clear that the United States won’t militarily support more Saudi airstrikes on Yemeni civilians. By supporting Reps. Jayapal and DeFazio’s Yemen War Powers Resolution, Congress can do its part to keep Saudi Arabia and its allies negotiating in good faith and bring this devastating conflict to an end.”

    Jumaan and Hakim also note that the Saudi government of Mohammed bin Salman Al Saud has recently pushed aside the Yemini group it was backing, see recent piece in the Wall Street Journal: “Saudi Arabia Pushed Yemen’s Elected President to Step Aside, Saudi and Yemeni Officials Say.”

    Hakim notes that the U.S. government has been protecting the Saudis from scrutiny and criticism for their devastation of Yemen at the United Nations. The U.S. ambassador, Linda Thomas-Greenfield, recently addressed the situation in Yemen by lauding alleged relief efforts by the Saudi regime — and blaming Putin for Yemeni food shortages because of the Russian invasion of Ukraine “even though Yemen has been in crisis for years due to the blockade.”