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Hundreds demand US, UK, French action to end Yemen civil war

Hundreds demand US, UK, French action to end Yemen civil war
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More than 350 international politicians, celebrities, Nobel laureates and other prominent figures signed a statement Tuesday demanding U.S., U.K. and French action to end the Yemeni civil war.

“The U.S., U.K. and France, as permanent members of the U.N. Security Council and major weapons suppliers to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, bear a special responsibility to use the full extent of their leverage to press their partners in the region to end the crisis,” read the statement, dubbed “A global call to President TrumpDonald John TrumpAppeals court OKs White House diverting military funding to border wall construction Pentagon: Tentative meeting between spy agencies, Biden transition set for early next week Conservative policy director calls Section 230 repeal an 'existential threat' for tech MORE, Prime Minister May and President Macron.”

“Instead of stoking the flames of a war that is strangling an entire population and risks destabilizing the entire region, they could be the brokers of peace," it added.

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The statement is meant to mark 1,000 days since the Saudi Arabia-led coalition intervened in the war.

U.S. signatories include Reps. Barbara LeeBarbara Jean LeeFeinstein pushes for California secretary of state to replace Harris in Senate Battle for Pentagon post in Biden Cabinet heats up Louisville mayor declares racism a public health crisis MORE (D-Calif.), Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalGovernment used Patriot Act to gather website visitor logs in 2019 Inequality of student loan debt underscores possible Biden policy shift Biden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far MORE (D-Wash.), Ro KhannaRohit (Ro) KhannaOvernight Defense: Defense bill among Congress's year-end scramble | Iranian scientist's assassination adds hurdles to Biden's plan on nuclear deal | Navy scrapping USS Bonhomme Richard after fire Biden faces new Iran challenges after nuclear scientist killed Biden Cabinet picks largely unify Democrats — so far MORE (D-Calif.), Keith EllisonKeith EllisonProgressives unveil Biden Cabinet wish list Officers involved with George Floyd killing will stand trial together in Minneapolis, judge decides Trump lashes out at state officials over virus restrictions at Minnesota rally MORE (D-Minn.) and Mark Pocan (D-Wis.), former U.S. Ambassador to Yemen Stephen Seche, and actresses Alyssa Milano and Piper Perabo.

Yemen has been embroiled in civil war since early 2015, when Houthi rebels took over the capital of Sanaa and President Abd-Rabbu Mansour Hadi fled to the southern city of Aden. Saudi Arabia, concerned about Iran’s support of the Houthis in a neighboring country, formed a coalition and intervened in support of Hadi.

The United States supports the Saudi campaign by selling them weapons, providing limited intelligence and helping with logistics such as air refueling.

As of November, 5,295 civilians have been killed and another 8,873 injured in the fighting, according to the United Nations.

The U.N. has also warned that the country is on the brink of famine and the World Health Organization has reported nearly 1 million cases of cholera and nearly 200 of diphtheria.

The situation in Yemen grew worse after Saudi Arabia last month imposed a blockade in response to the Houthis firing a missile on Riyadh, and the Houthis earlier this month killed their one-time ally of former Yemeni president Ali Abdullah Saleh.

President Trump has called on the Saudis to lift the blockade, and the White House has urged all parties to “immediately cease hostilities.” But the conflict continues unabated.

In Tuesday’s statement, the signatories described the war as at a “tipping point.”

“To prevent further catastrophe and famine, Yemen needs an immediate ceasefire; an end to all blockages on access for food, fuel and medical supplies; and investment in a new, inclusive peace process in which women, youth and diverse civil society meaningfully participate,” they wrote.

“We call upon President Trump, Prime Minister May, and President Macron, to take urgent action at the UN Security Council to make this happen.”