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Senate ends Saudi war aid, blames crown prince

Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis arrives to give House members a classified security briefing, with Secretary of State Mike Pompeo, not shown, on the murder of Jamal Khashoggi and Saudi Arabia's war in Yemen, on Capitol Hill in Washington, on Dec. 13, 2018. (AP Photo/J. Scott Applewhite)

WASHINGTON (AP) -- Senators have voted to recommend that the U.S. end its assistance to Saudi Arabia for the war in Yemen and put the blame for the death of journalist Jamal Khashoggi squarely on Saudi Crown Prince Mohammed bin Salman.

The votes are a direct challenge to both the longtime Middle East ally and President Donald Trump's handling of the relationship.

Independent Sen. Bernie Sanders of Vermont, who co-sponsored the Yemen resolution, calls the vote a "historic moment."

The bipartisan votes came two months after the Saudi journalist's slaying at the Saudi consulate in Istanbul and after Trump persistently equivocated over who was responsible. U.S. intelligence officials concluded that bin Salman must have at least known of the plot, but Trump has repeatedly praised the kingdom.

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