In a move anti-war critics warned will “greenlight more atrocities” by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen, U.S. President Donald Trump late Wednesday vetoed three congressional resolutions that aimed to block billions of dollars in weapons sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.
“The blood of Jamal Khashoggi and the innocent people of Yemen is on the president’s hands,” Rep. Jim McGovern (D-Mass.) tweeted after Trump vetoed the bipartisan measures, which passed last month after the president attempted to skirt Congress and unilaterally authorize over $8 billion in arms sales to the repressive Gulf nations.
The congressional resolutions were not approved by a veto-proof majority, meaning any effort to override Trump’s veto would likely fail.
As The Guardian reported, the “arms package included thousands of precision-guided munitions, other bombs and ammunition, and aircraft maintenance support” for the Saudis and UAE.
In his veto message, Trump cited unspecified “threats” from Iran as a justification for approving the weapons sales to Saudi Arabia without congressional approval.
Mariam Iskajyan, program manager for policy and advocacy at Win Without War, said the president’s vetoes are “heartbreaking” and could have devastating consequences for the people of Yemen, who are already suffering from the world’s worst humanitarian crisis.
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