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Updated January 18th, 2024 at 09:10 IST

Hamas Slams US for Re-Classifying Houthis as Terrorist Group, Calls the Move 'Unethical'

The draconian militant group from Gaza, Hamas, condemned the United States for re-designating the Iran-backed Houthis as a terrorist organisation.

US
US President Joe Biden, and Yemen's Houthis in Red Sea. | Image:AP
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Gaza - The draconian militant group from Gaza, Hamas, condemned the United States for re-designating the Iran-backed Houthis as a terrorist organisation. On Wednesday, the Palestinian militant group issued a statement on the matter and called the decision “biased” and “politically motivated”. The criticism came after the US Secretary of State Antony Blinken confirmed that Washington would re-classify Houthis as a terror group after the Biden administration decided to revoke the classification in 2021. Blinken mentioned that the restrictions and penalties linked to the designation would not take effect for 30 days and that the delay was designed to ensure the flow of aid and commercial goods to Yemeni civilians is minimally impacted, ABC News reported. 

“Hamas strongly condemns the reclassification by Washington of the Ansar Allah movement (Houthis) in Yemen as a global terrorist organization,” the Palestinian group wrote on Telegram. "The decision is biased and blatant support for the (Israeli) occupation and an overt attempt to protect it, providing cover for its brutal aggression and genocide against our Palestinian people in the Gaza Strip. This unethical and biased classification once again proves the alignment of President (Joe) Biden's administration with the Zionist expansionist agenda in Palestine and the region," the group furthered. In the same statement, Hamas expressed appreciation and gratitude for the efforts of Houthis and insisted that “American policies” would never “free the Arab people”.  “American policies will not deter the free and Arab peoples worldwide from expressing solidarity with our Palestinian people and their just cause until the end of the occupation and the realization of our people's aspirations for freedom and self-determination,” the group asserted. 

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Why the US re-designate Hamas as a terror group?

On Wednesday, Blinken mentioned that the US would redesignate the Yemeni militant group as a terrorist organisation. However, he noted that the restrictions and penalties linked to the designation would not take effect for the next 30 days, since the country is concerned about the flow of aid and commercial goods to Yemeni civilians. "The Houthis must be held accountable for their actions, but it should not be at the expense of Yemeni civilians," Blinken said in a statement. “As the Department of State moves forward with this designation, we are taking significant steps to mitigate any adverse impacts this designation may have on the people of Yemen,” he furthered. The American diplomat also emphasised that the decision could be reversed if the rebel group ended their assault on commercial vessels. "If the Houthis cease their attacks in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, the United States will reevaluate this designation," he said. The US State Department revoked the designation in the group shortly after President Biden took office in early 2021. 

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Published January 18th, 2024 at 09:10 IST

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