WASHINGTON, DC—Representative Eliot L. Engel, the leading Democrat on the House Committee on Foreign Affairs, today applauded the Administration’s request to provide support to moderate elements of the Syrian opposition. Last year, Rep. Engel introduced the Free Syria Act, which includes provisions similar to the Administration’s request.
“The Obama Administration’s new request to support moderate opposition groups in Syria shows that the United States is serious about taking on the dual threat of the Assad regime and extremist groups. Only by fighting both threats at the same time can we advance our interests in Syria, and I support this request,” said Rep. Engel. “A Syria without Assad is still possible, and we need to protect ourselves and our regional allies from the threat that ISIS poses. It is not too late to help the moderate opposition. It is not too late to help Syrians build the future they deserve.”
The authorization request was included as part of the President’s Fiscal Year 2015 Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) budget request.
In March 2013, Representative Engel introduced the Free Syria Act of 2013, comprehensive legislation that would authorize the President to provide appropriate assistance, including limited lethal equipment, to vetted Syrian opposition members; increase humanitarian assistance to affected Syrian populations; and begin planning for a post-Assad Syria to include lifting of Syrian sanctions.
Fres Syria Act of 2013