The US Senate has failed to override President Donald Trump’s veto of three resolutions blocking arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE).

Trump had earlier used his presidential veto to override resolutions passed by both chambers of Congress preventing the sale.

Citing the humanitarian crisis caused by the Saudi-led military campaign against Iran-allied Houthi rebels in Yemen and the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi, the US Congress had put on hold the pending arms sales to Saudi Arabia and the UAE.

But according to Trump, blocking the sale of weapons would “weaken America’s global competitiveness” and damage relations with allies.

Senators voted 45-40, 45-39 and 46-41 on the override attempts, falling well short of the two-thirds majority needed, the US media reported.

The Trump administration announced in May that it would invoke the “emergency” provision of the Arms Export Control Act to complete the $8.1 billion arms sales to US regional partners in the Middle East to deter Iranian threats.

Tensions between the US and Iran have been tense after Washington pulled out of the nuclear deal in 2018.