WASHINGTON: US lawmakers have moved a joint resolution in the Senate seeking to regulate Saudi Arabia’s military operations in Yemen.
Through this resolution, Senators Rand Paul, a Republican, and Chris Murphy, a Democrat, want to amend the National Defence Authorisation Act to link the provision of US weapons and ammunitions to Saudi Arabia to a presidential certification.
The president’s certification would consider how Saudi Arabia has used US weapons in attacks against civilians, how it affects US credibility in the region and how defence sales to the kingdom enhance US national security objectives.
Last week, the Amnesty International issued a statement, saying that it had documented evidence that the Saudi military has used American, British and Brazilian-made cluster bombs against Yemeni civilians.
The human rights advocacy groups also claimed that hundreds of civilians, including children, have been killed during the year-long Saudi offensive in that country.
“We need to put real conditions on our military aid to the Saudis to ensure their proxy wars with Iran do not distract them from the fight against violent extremist groups like ISIS,” Senator Murphy said in a statement issued jointly by the two lawmakers.
“It is no secret that Saudi Arabia’s record on strictly targeting combatants and legitimate military targets in Yemen has been questionable. I believe, along with Senator Murphy, that the US should halt the sale of air-to-ground munitions to Saudi Arabia until Congress has conducted proper oversight and ensured that such munitions are being used in a way that is consistent with our country’s national security strategy and values,” Senator Paul added.