November 10-15: Coalition temporarily halts al-Hudaydah offensive, Congressional Republicans prevent debate on Yemen

11/10

UN Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths pushed back the timeline for peace talks in Yemen, estimating that “they will try to bring them together by the end of the year.” This setback is concurrent with the renewed offensive on al-Hudaydah by the Saudi-led coalition.

The Yemen Peace Project Condemns House Republican Leadership’s De-privileging of H.Con.Res.138

This afternoon, the House of Representatives voted 201 - 187 to pass H.R. 1142, a rule appended to H.R. 6784, the “Manage Our Wolves Act”. H.R. 1142 stripped H.Con.Res. 138, a war powers resolution to end US military support to the Saudi-led coalition’s intervention in Yemen’s civil war, of its privilege, preventing a vote on its underlying substance.

YPP's Response to Secretary Mattis’ Statement on Refueling Support to the Coalition

The Yemen Peace Project welcomes the statement by Secretary of Defense James Mattis that the United States will end in-flight refueling of Saudi planes conducting aerial missions in Yemen. The statement marks a first, though insufficient, step toward ending US complicity in the Saudi-led coalition’s numerous war crimes in Yemen.

October 31st - November 9th: Escalation of fighting despite US calls for ceasefire; Fighting in Hudaydah threatens hospitals

10/31

Defense Secretary Mattis requested that “all parties” of the conflict in Yemen “take part in UN-led peace talks within the next thirty days.” Secretary of State Pompeo also came forward, urging “the Saudi-led coalition battling the rebel Houthi movement to end its air strikes on populated areas” in exchange for an end to Houthi missile attacks on Saudi Arabia.

NGOs and legal experts call for investigation into US mercenaries' crimes in Aden

Washington — The YPP and eleven other organizations, along with seven prominent legal experts, delivered a letter to the acting US attorney general this week urging the Department of Justice to investigate the actions of American mercenaries operating in Yemen. According to an investigation published last month by BuzzFeed, American and foreign employees of a US-based military contractor planned and carried out assassinations of civilians in Aden, on behalf of the United Arab Emirates. These acts, as described by the perpetrators themselves, constitute serious crimes under US law.

The letter was also delivered to the attorneys general of the state of Delaware, where the military contractor in question is incorporated, and New Jersey, where the conspirators claim to have planned some of their attacks. Copies were sent also to the Department of Justice’s Human Rights and Special Prosecutions Section.

We join the other signatories in demanding a full and transparent investigation, and we hope to see those responsible for these crimes prosecuted to the full extent of the law. The full text of the letter is below.

35 Yemeni and International Organizations Call for an Immediate Cessation of Hostilities in Yemen

Paris, 7 November 2018 – As humanitarian, human rights and peacebuilding organizations working on Yemen, we welcome tomorrow’s unprecedented coming together of legislators from across nations and parties for the first International Parliamentary Conference for Peace in Yemen to demand their governments work together to end the crisis. With 14 million men, women and children on the brink of famine – half the country’s population – there has never been a more urgent time to act. 

October 22-30: coalition sends reinforcements to Hudaydah, Pompeo calls for ceasefire

10/22

Chancellor Angela Merkel announced that Germany will discontinue its weapon exports to Saudi Arabia in light of the killing of Jamal Khashoggi.

UNICEF warns that fighting around the key port of al-Hudaydah, in addition to Yemen’s economic crisis, continues to exacerbate the humanitarian situation, putting millions of families in a desperate situation without access to clean water, food, or sanitation.

The United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs reported that over 3,000 families were affected by Cyclone Luban. About 2,203 families were displaced from their homes in the districts of al-Masilah, Sayhut, Huswain, Qishn, and al-Ghaydah City in al-Mahrah.

UN Special Envoy to Yemen Martin Griffiths is scheduled for a visit next Sunday to Ta’iz. Also in the works are plans for UN-sponsored meetings with the Yemeni government, Houthi representatives, and other regional and international actors in Nairobi in the near future.

The Hadi government’s Ministry of Planning and International Cooperation collaborated with UN Organization for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs in a workshop to address Yemen’s 2019 humanitarian response plan in Aden.

IHL & HRL Violations - August 2018

ANSAR ALLAH/HOUTHI MOVEMENT

Hudaydah Governorate

On August 14th, the Houthis kidnapped Mwatana human rights researcher Kamal Al Shawish. This violates Rule 99 of customary IHL.

Jizan, KSA

On August 8th, a Houthi missile launched into Saudi Arabia killed one and wounded eleven civilians, violating rules 3 and 6, which prohibit harming civilians.

October 13-18: 14 million people at risk of starvation; US mercenaries responsible for Aden assassinations

10/13

A coalition air raid targeted a checkpoint near Jabal Ras in Hudaydah, killing at least six people and injuring others.

10/14

Houthi militia arrested students at San’a University following the October 6th “Revolution of the Hungry” demonstration. Students had their phones confiscated and searched by militia members and a number of students were arrested.

Senator Sanders joined other senators in demanding that the US “withdraw its support from Saudi Arabia in Yemen’s civil war” in response to “allegations that the Saudi government murdered a dissident journalist.”

October 6-11: UN children's rights body condemns airstrikes; Congress threatens to block arms sales to KSA

10/6

Baseem al-Jenani reported that Houthi forces attempted to force residents of the al-Ja’bali neighborhood of al-Rabsah in Hudaydah to leave their homes in order to convert their houses into military barracks.

US Support for Coalition Civilian Targeting, March 2018 - Today

Since the Saudi- and UAE-led coalition began its intervention in Yemen’s civil war, the United States government has provided its indiscriminate air campaign with munitions, mid-air refueling, and still-unclear forms of targeting assistance. As civilian casualties have mounted, US officials have repeatedly claimed that US assistance is making things better, not worse.

This timeline of airstrikes, counting from March 2018 and updated periodically, throws these statements in stark relief. The timeline tracks major coalition airstrikes against civilians, alongside administration testimony to Congress and the press that the United States is making things better. Even if the coalition were marginally improving, as claimed, in the face of significant and ongoing coalition war crimes, the United States has one workable option: withdraw support to the air campaign and exercise existing military and diplomatic leverage over the coalition to arrest the worst of the violence, alleviate the humanitarian crisis, and move its support for the political solution beyond mere rhetoric.

September 24-October 4: US Congress takes up war powers bill, MSF withdraws from al-Dhali'

9/24

Save the Children reported, using data from ACLED (Armed Conflict Location and Event Data), that at least 685 civilians have been killed in Yemen between June and the end of August, with 51% of these casualties (about 349 civilians) attributed to the Hudaydah campaign alone.

9/25

President Trump announced his intention to appoint Christopher Paul Henzel to replace Matthew Tueller as US Ambassador to Yemen. The American embassy has been based in Saudi Arabia since the Houthi-Saleh coup in early 2015.

Human Rights Watch released a report detailing cases of hostage-taking orchestrated by the Houthis, which includes inhumane detention, torture, and murder.

YPP urges representatives to support resolution to withdraw US forces from Yemen

Washington, DC -- Today, a bipartisan group of representatives led by Ro Khanna (D-CA), Adam Smith (D-WA), Mark Pocan (D-WI), and Thomas Massie (R-KY) introduced a House Concurrent Resolution, invoking the War Powers Resolution of 1973, to direct the president to remove United States Armed Forces from hostilities in the Republic of Yemen that have not been authorized by Congress. The Yemen Peace Project endorses this resolution and urges representatives to cosponsor and vote for the measure.

September 15-21: Griffiths meets Houthis in San’a, humanitarian outlook worsens

9/15

The World Food Program reported that their Red Sea Mill Silos, which “mill a quarter of the WFP’s monthly wheat requirements,” came under attack. Additionally, a mortar shell was launched by an unidentified armed group at another WFP warehouse location. This warehouse was reported to be holding enough food for 19,200 people. Since these incidents, the WFP has been unable to deliver aid to civilians.  

August 28-September 14: Coalition resumes assault on Hudaydah

8/30

A UN report stated that nearly “120,000 suspected cases of cholera were reported” in Yemen between January and Mid-August, with the number of cases steadily increasing. UN spokesperson Stephane Dujarric worried that “the increasing rate of infections” could signify a “possible third wave of the epidemic.”

Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates Compliance with NDAA Section 1290 - September 2018

NDAA Section 1290 conditions further United States refueling assistance to the Saudi-led coalition’s air raids in Yemen on whether the Secretary of State can certify to Congress that Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates are undertaking specific steps to support a peace process and reduce civilian harm in Yemen. Drawing from the language of Section 1290, we briefly analyze the extent to which Saudi Arabia and the UAE have undertaken these measures and provide a recommendation for further congressional action.

Building Back Better: Priorities for Yemen's Economic Reconstruction

It might seem premature to discuss reconstruction as the war in Yemen drags on, with many actors on the ground seeing no end in sight. However, several key decision-makers, including Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council, are already discussing post-war strategies for reconstruction and recovery in Yemen. It is valuable then to discuss some policies that could facilitate rebuilding Yemen’s fractured economy, with an eye toward the future and the cessation of hostilities, but including those that could help the economy even before the conflict has ended.

Power Struggles in Ta'iz Pitch Aligned Groups Against Each Other, Report Finds

While the war in Yemen is often portrayed as having two sides---the Houthis aligned with GPC-San’a against the Saudi-led coalition and Hadi’s government forces--in reality, both sides are fragmented, with groups representing different political loyalties, often resulting in conflict among the groups within each alliance.

August 14-27: Civilians killed in Durayhimi, government-UAE tensions ratchet up again

8/14

Yemeni journalists on social media reported intense fighting between Houthi and coalition forces in the streets of al-Durayhimi, just south of Hudaydah City. Journalist Baseem al-Jenani reported multiple civilian casualties and heavy damage to residential neighborhoods.

8/15

The AP reported that fighting in al-Durayhimi killed at least 13 civilians in 24 hours. Sources also say Houthi shelling killed five civilians in Hajjah, where the Houthis face resistance from some local tribes as well as the coalition.

The AP quoted US officials who confirm that the UAE has paid money to Yemeni tribes to facilitate the withdrawal of AQAP from certain areas. This follows an earlier AP report that detailed the UAE’s practice of accommodating AQAP, and incorporating AQAP members into pro-government forces.

UAE military leaders told The Independent that the Emirati military intends to remain in Yemen for as long as it takes to “crush” AQAP, even after the Houthis are defeated. Many Yemenis believe that the UAE has colonial ambitions in southern Yemen, and its methods in the fight against AQAP have been criticized.