FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Danaka Katovich | CODEPINK Yemen Campaign Coordinator | [email protected] | 925 336 6221
Medea Benjamin | CODEPINK co-founder | [email protected] | 415 235 6517
Ariel Gold | CODEPINK national co-director | [email protected] | 510 599 5330
CODEPINK APPLAUDS BIDEN’S DECISION TO END U.S. SUPPORT FOR THE WAR ON YEMEN
We applaud President Biden’s declaration that he will be ending US support for all offensive operations in Yemen. The people of Yemen have endured years of brutal war and a suffocating blockade. The Saudi-led coalition has attacked Yemeni weddings, hospitals, schools, and funerals with consistent support from the United States. The ruthless attacks on Yemeni healthcare infrastructure have led to the rampant spread of preventable diseases like cholera and dengue—and now COVID. The end to American support for this war will hopefully bring some much-needed relief to the people of Yemen.
This announcement is coming after almost six years of tireless advocacy around the world, and on the heels of the January, 25th World Says No to War on Yemen Global Day of Action that CODEPINK helped organize. It comes after years of US lobbying, including getting bipartisan bills on Trump’s desk that were vetoed by the president.
“This is a day peace activists around the world have been waiting for,” says Danaka Katovich, CODEPINK’s Yemen Campaign Coordinator. “On the campaign trail, President Biden said he would end support for the war in Yemen, and I hope he keeps that promise to the fullest extent.”
“We hope Biden’s announcement marks the beginning of the end of this horrific war.” said CODEPINK co-founder Medea Benjamin, “We will be closely following the activities of the new envoy Timothy Lenderking in negotiating a peace process and will push the Biden administration to increase US aid to help repair the damages caused by our devastating participation in this war.”
CODEPINK has been engaged in the movement to end the war on Yemen since it began in 2015. “This is a hard-fought win for peace and it shows that activism in the streets and in the halls of Congress can bear fruit. We hope peace activists everywhere are heartened by this decision,” said CODEPINK co-director Ariel Gold.
Moving forward, CODEPINK will continue to push the Biden Administration to truly end all support for this war, which should include an end to all intelligence sharing with the coalition, an end to arms sales, and an immediate reversal of the terrorist designation for the Houthis, restoring and increasing humanitarian aid to all parts of Yemen, and reparations for the Yemeni people.
UPDATE: as of February 17th, 2021: CODEPINK applauds the Biden Administration’s decision to reverse the terrorist designation on the Houthis in Yemen. The administration also announced that they will stop offensive intelligence sharing with Saudi Arabia. Peace activists still seek clarity on what “offensive” support really entails, and there are still questions about which arms sales will still be permitted to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.