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 TrumpRosenstein expected to leave DOJ next month: reports Allies wary of Shanahan's assurances with looming presence of Trump States file lawsuit seeking to block Trump's national emergency declaration 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 LeeThe 10 Dems most likely to win the 2020 presidential nomination Kamala Harris shopping trip stirs Twitter campaign trail debate Newsom endorses Kamala Harris for president MORE (D-Calif.), Pramila JayapalPramila JayapalOvernight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Push for cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill | Court lets Dems defend ObamaCare | Flu season not as severe as last year, CDC says Democrats seek cosponsors for new 'Medicare for all' bill Overnight Health Care — Sponsored by America's 340B Hospitals — Utah tests Trump on Medicaid expansion | Dems roll out Medicare buy-in proposal | Medicare for all could get hearing next month | Doctors group faces political risks on guns MORE (D-Wash.), Ro KhannaRohit (Ro) KhannaOvernight Defense: House votes to end US support for Saudis in Yemen | Vote puts Trump in veto bind | Survey finds hazards in military housing | Senators offer new bill on Russia sanctions House passes bill to end US support for Saudi war in Yemen Congress poised to put Trump in veto bind MORE (D-Calif.), Keith EllisonKeith Maurice EllisonIlhan Omar defends 2012 tweet: 'I don't know how my comments would be offensive to Jewish Americans' States scramble to fill void left by federal shutdown 116th Congress breaks records for women, minority lawmakers 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.”