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US Lawmaker Questions Arms Sales to Saudi-UAE Coalition in Yemen

folder_openUnited States access_time2 months ago
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By Staff, Agencies

Key US congressman Eliot Engel asked whether Congress should consider adding restrictions on weapons sales to the Saudi-UAE coalition in Yemen after a recent investigation said that US-made weapons had been transferred to al-Qaeda-linked groups in the country.

Engel, the chairman of the House of Representatives Foreign Affairs Committee, said on Wednesday that he was troubled by reports over illicit weapons transfers to armed groups.

CNN reported on Tuesday that Saudi Arabia and the UAE were using US-manufactured weapons "as a form of currency to buy the loyalties of militias or tribes, bolster chosen armed actors, and influence the complex political landscape".

"These reports are very troubling and the Trump administration must investigate further and work to prevent this from happening again," Engel said at Wednesday's hearing.

"Should Congress pursue greater restrictions on offensive weapons to the Saudi coalition?" asked Engel, who as chairman has the right to review and put "holds" on major foreign weapons sales.

According to CNN, the coalition gave the al-Qaeda-linked Abu al-Abbas Brigade US-made weapons, including Oshkosh armored vehicles.

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