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US to classify 'Houthis' as a terror group; aid agencies unhappy

camera_altHouthi armed persons (Image Courtesy : AFP)

The United States has decided to designate the Houthi rebel militias in Yemen as a 'terrorist group'. The US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said on Sunday the Department of State will notify Congress of his intent, and sources said to Reuters that the announcement might be made on Monday.

Pompeo said in a statement that the designation,which will come into effect on January 19, aims to hold the pro-Iranian group liable for their terrorist acts, including cross-border attacks that threaten the civilian population, infrastructure and commercial shipping.

"I also intend to include three Houthi leaders, Abdul Malik Al Houthi, Abd Al Khaliq Badr Al Din Al Houthi, and Abdullah Yahya al Hakim on the list of international terrorists as Specially Designated Global Terrorists," the Secretary added.

However, several aid groups as well as members of Biden's Democratic Party have cautioned that this move will severely hinder efforts to address world's largest humanitarian crisis, AFP reported. Meanwhile, Pompeo insisted that the designations will not affect relief work.

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TAGS:Middle East UpdatesYemenHouthiUSA
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