US President Joe Biden said on Wednesday his administration is considering re-designating Yemen’s Houthi movement as an “international terrorist organisation” following drone and missile attacks on the United Arab Emirates claimed by the group.
His comment at a news conference came shortly after the Emirati Embassy said on Twitter that UAE Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba urged the Biden administration to restore the designation in response to Monday’s strikes on Abu Dhabi airport and a fuel depot.
Asked if he supported returning the Iran-aligned Houthis to the US list of foreign terrorist organisations, from which they were removed nearly a year ago, Biden replied, “The answer is, it’s under consideration.”
But he conceded that “it’s going to be very difficult” to end the conflict pitting the Houthis against Yemen’s internationally recognised government and a Saudi-led military coalition, to which the UAE belongs.
Biden’s comment reflected the lack of progress toward ending the war since he launched an initiative shortly after taking office a year ago to bolster UN efforts to restart peace talks and end what the United Nations calls the world’s worst humanitarian disaster.
The UAE welcomed Biden’s comment, the Emirati Embassy said on Twitter. The “case is clear launching ballistic and cruise missiles against civilian targets, sustaining aggression, diverting aid to Yemeni people,” it said.Agencies