The House is set to vote on amendments for the 2023 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that would constrain arms sales to Saudi Arabia as President Biden is preparing to visit the Kingdom.
According to The Hill, the House will begin discussion of the amendments Wednesday and will vote on them later this week. Democrats offered a handful of amendments on the issue, but only two were allowed to be debated on the House floor.
One amendment, sponsored by Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-VA), Tom Malinowski (D-NJ), and Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez (D-NY), would impose temporary limits on arms sales to the Saudis and require investigation and action over the killing of journalist Jamal Khashoggi.
The other amendment, led by Malinowski and six other Democrats, would require an investigation into whether US-provided arms were used by the Saudi-led coalition in Yemen in “substantial violation of relevant agreements with countries participating in the coalition.”
The Saudi-led coalition is known to use US-made weapons to kill civilians in Yemen. According to Amnesty International, the coalition used a US-made precision-guided munition to bomb a migrant detention center in January. According to the Yemen Data Project, the strike killed at least 91 civilians.
The debate on the NDAA comes after Reuters reported that the Biden administration is considering lifting a ban on selling the Saudis “offensive” weapons. Biden implemented the policy early on in his administration but has approved sales for air-to-air missiles since.
If the amendments are added to the House version of the NDAA, they would still need to make it through the conference where the House and Senate negotiate the finalized version of the spending bill.