Arab Coalition ends U.S. refueling deal in Yemen

Arab Coalition ends U.S. refueling deal in Yemen

The coalition expressed hope in its statement that his efforts would lead to a negotiated settlement, including an end to Houthi missile attacks that have targeted Saudi cities and vessels off the port of Hodeidah.

Norway announced on Friday that it was suspending new licences for arms exports to Saudi Arabia following recent developments in the Gulf kingdom and the situation in Yemen.

Yet even with that refueling support, Saudi Arabia has faced widespread global criticism over its campaign of airstrikes in the coalition's war in Yemen, targeting Shiite rebels known as Houthis who hold the capital, Sanaa.

As a result, the decision to halt the US refueling will likely have little impact on the fight, but will allow the Trump administration to say it has taken action against the Saudis for the devastation in Yemen.

USA officials, speaking on condition of anonymity Friday to discuss the decision before its announcement, said the end to refueling wouldn't stop American training and military assistance.

United Nations special envoy for Yemen Martin Griffiths has said he is consultations with Yemen's warring parties to finalize details for a new round of peace talks.

The announcement came amid worldwide outrage over Riyadh's killing of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the kingdom's consulate in Istanbul in October, though Norway did not mention the murder specifically.

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The clashes come as the United Nations pushes to restart negotiations between the warring parties, after planned talks in Geneva collapsed in September before they even began.

Beyond refuelling, the United States provides limited intelligence support to the Saudi-led coalition and sells it weaponry used in Yemen's war. Human rights groups say the real death toll may be five times higher.

He suggested a continuing role for the United States in Yemen to help the Saudi-led coalition and Yemeni forces minimise civilian casualties and expand humanitarian efforts.

Critics of the Saudi campaign - including Democrats who won control of the House of Representatives in elections on Tuesday - have long questioned United States involvement in the war, which has killed more than 10,000 people, displaced more than 2 million and led to widespread starvation in Yemen since it began in 2015.

Saudi Arabia and the UAE view the war as a means to limit Iranian influence in the Arabian Peninsula.

A third doctor and a rescuer said that 55 other Houthis were killed in fighting inside the port city and that their bodies had been transferred to the capital Sanaa, which the rebels control. The Houthis also have imprisoned opponents and indiscriminately laid land mines. At the end of October, Mattis joined U.S. Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in calling for a cease-fire.

AFP reported that 132 people had been killed in Hodeidah in 24 hours of violence, including at least 47 Houthi fighters. Worldwide aid agencies warn any disruption to the port could sever that crucial lifeline. "We are now warning that by allowing this to go on, parties to the conflict and their global backers will be responsible for the death, injury and suffering of millions of people".

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