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On May 31, Reps. Pramila Jayapal (WA-07), Peter DeFazio (OR-04), Nancy Mace (SC-01), and Adam Schiff (CA-27) introduced a Yemen War Powers Resolution to end U.S. participation in the Saudi-led coalition’s war and blockade in Yemen. This legislation, introduced with 41 bipartisan cosponsors, comes after months of lobbying by FCNL’s national Advocacy Team network in support of a War Powers Resolution for Yemen. 

Now, FCNL is calling on lawmakers to cosponsor and vote in favor of this resolution to support the ongoing truce in Yemen and finally end U.S. involvement in the war, before more Yemenis are plunged into famine.

This legislation, introduced with 40 bipartisan cosponsors, comes after months of lobbying by FCNL’s national Advocacy Team network.

According to UN estimates, the war has killed nearly 400,000 Yemenis, and has created acute food insecurity among 19 million people. Eighty percent of the country’s population relies on food assistance for survival. Despite President Biden’s announcement in February 2021 that he would cease support for offensive operations in Yemen, the United States continues to provide maintenance, spare parts, and logistical support for Saudi warplanes. 

Since the start of 2022, FCNL’s Advocacy Teams network has lobbied members of Congress to support introduction and passage of a War Powers Resolution. FCNL advocates have had a record-breaking year, leading more than 170 meetings with congressional offices,  including member-level visits with Sens. James Risch (ID) and Jack Reed (RI). Advocacy Teams in 43 states have met with their members of Congress, several of whom became original cosponsors of the resolution after meeting with Advocacy Teams. Of the original cosponsors of the Yemen War Powers Resolution, 17 have met with FCNL advocates. 

Members of FCNL Advocacy Teams have written more than 66 letters-to-the-editor and op-eds in key local newspapers in support of the Yemen War Powers Resolutions.  Several have hosted local screenings of the film Hunger Ward, which tells the story of two Yemeni health care workers fighting to save the lives of hunger-stricken children within a population on the brink of famine.

FCNL Advocacy Teams also have helped galvanize the national peace movement’s engagement in Yemen work, including by organizing grassroots actions with partner organizations across the country. 

Progress towards peace is advancing in Congress and on the ground.

These tireless efforts are making a difference. Progress towards peace is advancing in Congress and on the ground. An ongoing truce between Saudi coalition forces and the Houthis continues to hold. The result has been a cessation of airstrikes, a loosening of the fuel blockade, and the first flight out of Sana’a airport in six years. 

In order to ensure that this truce can be translated into a lasting peace, Congress must codify a true end to U.S. involvement in offensive operations and build pressure to keep the warring parties at the bargaining table.

By reasserting its Article I war authority and passing a Yemen War Powers Resolution, Congress can help create conditions that will lead to an extension of this temporary truce, negotiation of a lasting peace settlement, and an end to this devastating humanitarian crisis.

Kat DesCamp-Renner

Kat DesCamp-Renner

Program Assistant, Middle East Policy (2021-2022)

Kat DesCamp-Renner was the program assistant for Middle East policy.