RealNews

US poised to apply Syria sanctions

The US is to impose tough new sanctions against Syria “very shortly”, a senior American official has said. A set of sanctions including economic and diplomatic measures was approved in December by President Bush, but no date for implementation was set at the time. The US is seeking to pressure Syria for its alleged support of terrorism and pursuit of biological and chemical arms, and military presence in Lebanon. Syria has expressed regret about the sanctions and says it wants dialogue. “I think you’ll see the implementation very shortly, and I think it will be a very firm implementation of the Syrian Accountability Act and the intent behind it,” said William Burns, assistant secretary of state for Near Eastern affairs. However unnamed officials said it was the economic rather than diplomatic measures incorporated in the package – which could ban US exports to Syria and freeze Syria’s assets in the US – that would probably be implemented. Full Story

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