Statement on US Government Designation of Houthis as a Foreign Terrorist Organization


Ministry of Foreign Affairs & Expatriates

January 11, 2021


Statement on US Government Designation of Houthis as a Foreign Terrorist Organization

The Government of the Republic of Yemen takes this opportunity to comment on the latest decision by the United States Government to officially designate Ansar Allah (partisans of God), i.e., the Houthis, as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). “After six years of conflict, and attempting other types of sanctions, we believe that all political and legal pressures must continue being mounted, maximized and maintained on the Houthis in order to make conditions conducive and conclusive to a peaceful solution to the conflict. The Government of Yemen welcomes this US announcement, and which is intended to engender an ultimate final resolution to this long and tragic conflict in Yemen,” states H.E. Dr. Ahmed Awad BinMubarak, Minister of Foreign Affairs & Expatriates (and former Ambassador of the Republic of Yemen to the United States of America).

Moreover, the Houthis merit an FTO designation not only for their concerted efforts in prolonging the conflict and producing the world’s worst humanitarian catastrophe, but also for their actual concealed terrorist actions. The Houthis are an emerging menace to both regional allies and international security; and their presence also poses a threat to US interests and national security.

Furthermore, the Houthis have perpetrated crimes against humanity, including by terrorist activities in secret collusion and collaboration with other foreign terrorist groups who have managed to operate from Yemeni territories. Truly, and even beyond Hezbollah and IRGC, there is also a hidden nexus and network of cooperation between the Houthis and other foreign terrorist groups who have global aims and ambitions to attack the US military, American nationals and involvements in the region. Consequently, this FTO designation will alter the dynamics to make it even more untenable for the Houthis to endeavor any violent actions, just as the US military did in retaliating after Houthi missile attacks against the USS Mason in October 2016 on the Red Sea near Yemen.

Indeed, it is with Iran’s ideological, financial, military, and technical support to the Houthis that have allowed the Houthis to engage in reckless and reprehensible terrorist acts (including the December 30, 2020 attacks at Aden Airport that killed and injured many people); and in causing the worst humanitarian crisis in the world that has affected millions of innocent Yemenis, with dire health deficits and other related challenges made pervasive stemming from, among other things, the Houthis appalling misdeeds with aid delivery and relief efforts.

There are those who contend that any FTO designation on the Houthis will have “unintended consequences,” both for the peace process and humanitarian concerns. We totally understand these apprehensions as articulated by well-meaning parties, especially those involved with aid operations in Yemen. However, it is the continuous and callous interference of the Houthis that has obstructed such crucial efforts, not from any other parties to the conflict. Thus, the FTO designation should be viewed as an effective tool to stop their deplorable behavior, and whose application is not designed to negatively impact the conduct of relief and humanitarian operations. Indeed, it is intended to push the Houthis to end their machinations and compel them to genuinely pursue realizing a secure and sustainable peace. It is to extricate the country from its seemingly interminable awful situation. And it is to make the Houthis give up their illusions of entitlement or divine right to rule Yemen.

Therefore, in order to realize a decisive end to this long and tragic conflict, the Government of Yemen unwaveringly supports a FTO designation for the Houthis by the US Government as a just recourse and remedy in the interest of achieving peace through practical pressures, while it contemporaneously continues to fully back all United Nations-led efforts to reach a comprehensive peace. The Houthis must respond and reciprocate. And the Houthis must stop hampering UN-led peace efforts and to cease escalating hostilities once and for all.

Embassy of the Republic of Yemen Condemns Iran-Backed Houthis for Endangering Yemenis to the Coronavirus and Urges International Pressur

Embassy of the Republic of Yemen Condemns Iran-Backed Houthis for Endangering Yemenis to the Coronavirus and Urges International Pressure

Tomorrow, Thursday, March 26, 2020, marks five years since Yemen’s legitimate government with the crucial help of the Arab Coalition acted to thwart the Iran-backed Houthis from taking over all of Yemen. It is not a day for celebration, despite the important security gains from territory retaken by the government.

The international community recognizes that peace is long overdue in Yemen. The legitimate government and its coalition members have made overtures, and we have been working closely with all United Nations Special Envoys and international partners to find some way to convince the Houthis to agree to a comprehensive cease-fire and to join in a unity government that would give all Yemenis – including the Houthis – a voice in the future of the country. Unfortunately, the actions of the Iran-backed Houthis over the past year have proven to the world that they are determined to continue and even intensify this conflict, no matter what the cost.

Most recently, they have cynically blocked food aid to millions of suffering Yemenis living under Houthi oppression; and the Houthis have refused to cooperate on basic health strategies to prevent numerous communities from the threat posed by the Coronavirus pandemic.

Just this January, the Houthis launched three missiles during Maghreb prayers at a mosque in the province of Marib, killing 111 worshippers and injuring more than 100 others. It was the latest manifestation of the Houthis’ callous disregard for the sanctity of civilian life. The Houthis also have indiscriminately planted more than 1 million land mines under Yemeni soil, forcibly conscripted thousands of child soldiers and indoctrinated many more young children in schools that include a mandatory daily recital of their slogan that horribly incites anti-Americanism and anti-Semitism. The contrast between the behavior and visions of Yemen’s legitimate government and the Iran-backed Houthis has never been clearer than now.

In the current global context, while Yemen has no confirmed cases yet of Coronavirus, the legitimate government has taken steps to ensure proper testing is available and promoted awareness of the virus in its controlled areas. It has worked with the World Health Organization to secure medical equipment, including test kits, hazmat suits, masks and gloves for local medical colleges and institutions. From other partners such as Saudi Arabia, the legitimate government has secured pledges of funding, technical expertise, and additional health resources to help with our pandemic preparedness efforts.

The Houthis, meanwhile, continue to import advanced weaponry and trainers from Iran, the country with the most severe Coronavirus outbreak in our region. They continue to block aid to Yemenis in Houthi-controlled areas and refuse to provide any kind of personal protective equipment, hoarding them along with the food and water intended for vulnerable and malnourished civilians.

The international community should not be surprised, given the Houthis’ past deplorable conduct and continued egregious actions to arrest, torture and execute innocent Yemenis on false charges; the politicization of courts; and the steady theft of humanitarian assistance that has been so grievous, it has forced the United Nations to suspend food deliveries to Houthi-controlled regions for months at a time.

“The Houthis have made it clear that they do not want peace, not on any terms, and are actively pushing a strategy to relentlessly increase the misery of the Yemeni people,” said Dr. Ahmed BinMubarak, Yemen’s Ambassador to the United States.” “The Houthis continue to blatantly violate international law, with few repercussions from the international community. Given the threat to all Yemenis posed by the COVID-19, we need a united front on the Houthis so that they come to the negotiation table once and for all – and in accordance with the established Three References (i.e., Gulf Cooperation Council Initiative & Implementation Mechanism, the outcomes of the National Dialogue Conference and United Nations Security Council Resolutions, especially 2216).”

Indeed, on this fifth anniversary of the international effort to stop the Houthis, Yemen’s legitimate government is yet again reaffirming its desire for a comprehensive peace that can finally end this conflict. It is prepared to dialogue with anyone and work constructively with everyone to give the Yemeni people the security, stability, and prosperity they always have deserved.

Embassy of Republic of Yemen Condemns on Houthis Abduction and Detention of Dr. Hamid Aqlan, Urges International Community & the Human Rights Organizations to Act

Embassy of Republic of Yemen Condemns Houthis Abduction and Detention of Dr. Hamid Aqlan, Urges International Community & the Human Rights Organizations to Act

January 31, 2020

The Embassy of the Republic of Yemen in Washington, D.C. unequivocally condemns the Iran-backed Houthis’ abduction of Dr. Hamid Aqlan, the president of the Sana’a-based University of Science and Technology, and his transfer to an unnamed prison without notification to his family or colleagues. His replacement by Adel Al-Mutawakkl, a known Houthi affiliate, is yet another instance in a long line of Houthi interference in Yemeni academics to promote their evil and flawed ideology.

“The Iran-backed Houthi’s abuse of the Yemeni higher education system is intended to warp the Yemeni people’s minds to be sympathetic towards terrorism,” said Ambassador of the Republic of Yemen Dr. Ahmed Awab BinMubarak. “They have consistently violated the basic human rights of the people within their territory, despite their pledge to the Stockholm Agreement.”

This is not the first time that the Houthis have interfered with the University. In 2014, the group stormed the campus, confiscated university equipment and threatened its closure. In 2018, militias arrested several professors from the University of Sanaa, holding them in similar censored prisons, and have continued to reject their pay.

The government of Yemen calls on the international community to exert necessary maximum pressure on the Houthi militias to stop their abduction of prominent Yemeni academics, to make their prisons, uncensored, and to release immediately all prisoners in accordance with the Stockholm Agreement and the related UN Security Council Resolutions.

Statement on the Houthi attack, which killed over 100 worshipers and injured more than 100 others in Marib, Yemen

Statement on the Houthi attack and war crime perpetrated this past Saturday, which killed over 100 worshipers and injured more than 100 others in Marib, Yemen

January 21, 2020

The Embassy of the Republic of Yemen in Washington, DC, strongly condemns the most recent Houthi war crime perpetrated this past Saturday, which killed 111 worshipers and injured more than 100 others. The Iran-backed Houthi militias launched three ballistic missiles at a mosque in Al Meil during Magreb prayers, in violation of the Geneva Convention and all international human rights law. The Houthis deliberately targeted a place of worship during prayer time to maximize fatalities in direct contravention of all international human rights law, making this atrocity a clear war crime.

Since the Houthis violently overthrew Sana’a in 2014, they have committed 738 violations against places of worship and worshipers, causing the full or partial destruction of 73 mosques. These violations include the bombing, shelling, and looting of mosques, as well as detention of imams and the conversion of mosques into military barracks.

“The Iran-backed Houthis committed an egregious war crime when they targeted worshipers during prayer time,” said Ambassador of Yemen to the US, Ahmed Awad BinMubarak. “The Geneva Convention and international human rights law forbid this inhumane kind of attack on places of worship. The United Nations and international community must condemn this barbaric attack, and take action to ensure the Houthis do not get away with such blatant disregard for human life and international law.”

The Houthis have violated international law thousands of times since they stormed the capital of Yemen in 2014. The United Nations has documented proof of Houthi recruitment of child soldiers, diversion of humanitarian aid, landmine contamination, civilian targeting and countless other violations of human rights. Yemen’s Ministry of Human Rights urges the United Nations and the UN Security Council to issue a binding resolution against the Houthi militias to cease all violations, especially those against places of worship. Further, the UN must do more to protect places of worship at risk during war.


Press Release : Houthi Missile Strike Kills 14, Wounds Dozens in Al Thabit Marketplace

July 29, 2019

Houthi Missile Strike Kills 14, Wounds Dozens in Al Thabit Marketplace

July 29, 2019 – Washington DC- The Embassy of Yemen condemns the heinous Houthi missile strikes on a civilian marketplace in Saada, which killed at least 14 civilians and injured dozens more. The Iranian-backed Houthis launched Katyusha rockets at the marketplace in the Qatabir district, deliberately targeting civilians. This is yet another example of the Houthis’ brazen disregard for Yemeni civilians and international war law.

“The Houthis have repeatedly attacked civilians as a fundamental tactic of their war on the Yemeni people,” said Dr. Ahmed Awad BinMubarak, Ambassador of Yemen to the United States. “Houthi war crimes have plagued Yemen since the Houthis began this conflict in 2014. The United Nations, the United States, and the international community must denounce this missile strike on innocent Yemeni civilians and pressure the Houthis to cease all missile strikes against civilian populations both within Yemen’s boundaries and across international borders into Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates.”

The cynicism of the Houthi attack was underlined by the rebel group’s coordinated attempt to blame the attack on external forces. This information campaign by the Houthis proves that the attack was clearly premeditated, and the Houthis tried to deflect blame because they knew what they were doing was wrong.

The Iran-backed Houthi militias receive munitions, weapons, training, and financial support from their allies in Tehran. The United Nations, the US Department of State and other international organizations have documented shipments of ballistic missile components, drone material and training provided to the Houthi militias by the Iranian regime.

Press Release: On the Houthis Pervasive & Deliberate Diversion of Humanitarian Aid in Yemen.



May 20, 2019

The Embassy of the Republic of Yemen today calls upon the United Nations to make public the true scope of aid diversion from Yemeni civilians, after a CNN investigation found new evidence of the widespread culpability of the Iran-backed Houthis in stealing and misusing humanitarian assistance. Today’s warning from the World Food Programme that it will suspend aid in Houthi-controlled areas suggests the scale of Houthi aid diversion is much greater than previously thought.

“The world cannot stand by while the Iran-backed Houthis starve innocent Yemenis for political purposes,” Dr. Ahmed BinMubarak, Yemen’s Ambassador to the United States, said. “Houthi abuse of humanitarian assistance has been repeatedly documented by aid groups and international media, and this new CNN investigation presents even more condemning evidence. The U.N. to make clear the real scope of Houthi aid diversion, and the international community should make guaranteed aid access a precondition of any engagement with the Houthis.”

The CNN undercover investigation found the Houthis have diverted food and other aid supplies on a far greater scale than what the United Nations previously has reported. The probe showed how the Houthis have diverted critical supplies from starving children and malnourished civilians in favor of feeding their soldiers.

The findings corroborate U.N. allegations last year that the Houthis deliberately blocked aid deliveries and used famine as a political weapon against citizens living in Houthi-controlled areas. While the U.N. has estimated that only 1 percent of all aid was going missing in Yemen, the new CNN investigation suggests the aid theft is far more pervasive.

The Houthis have a history of imposing severe restrictions on humanitarian workers in their territory, which include stealing and diverting aid supplies to benefit Houthi soldiers or to sell on the open market. The Houthis also use humanitarian aid to buy political support, rewarding what the U.N. calls “non-deserving populations” if they pledge to fight while punishing tribes, civilians and extremely vulnerable groups that only wish to remain neutral.

The Embassy of the Republic of Yemen categorically rejects the excuses of Houthi representative Hussin Al-Ezzi, who told CNN: “Mistakes happen sometimes.” Intentionally stealing aid meant to reach the most vulnerable civilians to feed militant groups or reward the corrupt can never be shrugged off as “mistakes.” These are horrific crimes against the Yemeni people.

“The Houthi leadership admits that they treat civilians as ‘capital’ for the war, to be fed or starved as they see fit to advance their political interests,” Ambassador BinMubarak said. “This famine is not a ‘mistake.’ The Houthis are deliberately starving Yemenis and blocking legitimate organizations such as the World Food Programme because they think it will tighten their hold on power.”

Last year, the World Food Programme (WFP) assessed seven districts in Houthi-controlled Sana’a and found some 60% of people had not received any aid. The shortfall was not a reflection of lack of supplies. It was a reflection of a Houthi fraud.

In recent months, the Houthis also blocked WFP access to grain supplies that could have fed millions of Yemenis. As Jonathan Cohen, the acting U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations, said: “Only the Houthis are blocking access to the mills… And they alone will be to blame if the food spoils.”

Today, we learned that the WFP is considering the suspension of aid in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen, a remarkable warning from the UN program.  According to WFP, the Houthis have denied access to aid workers, blocked aid convoys, and interfered with aid distribution. The Houthis continue to place obstacles placed in the way of WFP’s independent selection of beneficiaries and a request for a roll out of a biometric registration system. Unfortunately, Houthi leaders have “broken assurances” given to WFP, and negotiations have yielded no tangible solutions.