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Asked if he supported returning the Iran-aligned Houthis to the US list of foreign terrorist organisations, from which they were removed nearly a year ago, Biden replied, “The answer is, it’s under consideration.” Image Credit: Bloomberg

Washington: US President Joe Biden said on Wednesday his administration is considering re-designating Yemen’s Houthi movement as an international terrorist organisation following drone and missile attacks on the UAE claimed by the group.

His comment at a news conference came shortly after the UAE Embassy said on Twitter that UAE Ambassador Yousef Al Otaiba urged the Biden administration to restore the designation in response to Monday’s strikes on Abu Dhabi airport and a fuel depot.

Asked if he supported returning the Iran-aligned Houthis to the US list of foreign terrorist organisations, from which they were removed nearly a year ago, Biden replied, “The answer is, it’s under consideration.”

The UAE welcomed Bidens comment, the UAE Embassy said on Twitter. The case is clear “ launching ballistic and cruise missiles against civilian targets, sustaining aggression, diverting aid to Yemeni people,” it said.

Saudi Arabia’s ambassador to Yemen, Mohammed Al Jaber, said on Twitter on Thursday that the United Nations and global community must not show leniency and hold the Houthi movement accountable because “it encourages other terrorist organisations to act similarly”.

As part of the initiative he launched last year, Biden appointed veteran US diplomat Timothy Lenderking a special envoy. The State Department also reversed a last-minute Trump administration decision placing the Houthis on the U.S. list of foreign terrorist groups, subjecting them to financial sanctions.

Three people were killed in Monday’s drone and missile attack claimed by the Houthis.