New US Sanctions on Houthis That Block Yemen Peace Deal Go Into Effect

The new terror designation blocks the payment of Yemeni government workers in Houthi-controlled areas

The US on Friday formally re-designated Yemen’s Houthis as “Specially Designated Global Terrorists,” a step that imposes new sanctions that make the implementation of a Saudi-Houthi peace deal impossible.

The US announced its plans to impose the new sanctions last month over Houthi attacks in the Red Sea, which have only escalated since President Biden launched a bombing campaign in Yemen on January 12.

The terror designation blocks the Saudi-Houthi peace deal by prohibiting the payment of Yemeni civil workers living in Houthi-controlled Yemen, which is where most Yemenis live. The workers were supposed to get paid as part of the first phase of the deal, but a US official told The New York Times that it won’t be allowed unless the Houthis halt their Red Sea attacks.

The payment of Yemeni civil workers was a major sticking point for Houthi and Saudi negotiators over the past two years. The Houthis have long demanded for them to be paid using oil revenue from areas of Yemen controlled by the Saudi-backed government, but it’s unclear what arrangement the two sides ultimately agreed on.

The Houthis, officially known as Ansar Allah, have been clear that they won’t stop the operations until the Israeli slaughter in Gaza comes to an end. Instead of pressuring Israel to end its brutal assault, President Biden chose to launch a new war against the Houthis, and the US has been bombing Yemen nearly every day.

The latest strikes reported by US Central Command hit Yemen throughout the day on Saturday. CENTCOM claimed it hit five Houthi targets, including an underwater drone. “CENTCOM identified the anti-ship cruise missiles, unmanned underwater vessel, and the unmanned surface vessel in Houthi-controlled areas of Yemen and determined they presented an imminent threat,” the command said.

The new bombing campaign and sanctions have grave implications for Yemenis, who finally had some relief from war after the Saudis and Houthis agreed on a ceasefire in April 2022. From 2015-2022, the brutal US-backed Saudi/UAE war against the Houthis killed at least 377,000 people. More than half died due to starvation and disease caused by the war.

Author: Dave DeCamp

Dave DeCamp is the news editor of, follow him on Twitter @decampdave.