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Shaheen Statement on Chemical Attack in Syria

(Washington, DC)— U.S. Senator Jeanne Shaheen (D-NH), a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees, issued the following statement after Syrian civilians were targeted in a chemical attack by the Syrian government:

“This latest chemical attack by Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad on his own people is a disturbing reminder of the dangerous political influence of Russia and Tehran,” said Shaheen. “I voted for military action when Assad launched illegal chemical weapons attacks in 2013, and I supported the Trump administration’s decision to launch airstrikes in response to Assad’s assault on civilians in 2017. However, military efforts alone are not sufficient to adequately deal with the Syrian civil war. As long as the conflict persists, terrorist organizations will continue to enjoy a safe haven in Syria and innocent people will continue to die. I have been calling on the White House to pursue a serious strategy for Syria since 2016. As a member of the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees, I’ll continue to push for a clear strategy on Syria and will keep urging this administration to take additional actions against Russia and bad actors propping up Assad’s regime.” 

Senator Shaheen, a member of both the Senate Armed Services and Foreign Relations Committees, passed a key proposal through the Senate Foreign Relations Committee last year that would establish a bipartisan panel to complete a comprehensive strategic review of American policy in Syria. Shaheen has urged the leadership of the Senate State, Foreign Operations, and Related Programs Appropriations Subcommittee, as well as the leadership of the Senate Armed Services Committee to move forward and establish a Syria Study Group. Last year, Shaheen helped introduce the bipartisan Syrian War Crimes Accountability Act, which would instruct the Secretary of State to report on war crimes, crimes against humanity and genocide in Syria. It would also authorize assistance for investigations and other credible transitional justice efforts to hold Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad and his regime accountable for its crimes.