Senators introduce bill to block US arming Syria militants
The legislation was introduced on June 20 by Democrats Tom Udall and Chris Murphy and Republicans Mike Lee and Rand Paul in an effort to bar the US Department of Defense and spy agencies from feeding anti-Syria Takfiri militants.
On June 14, Obama ordered his administration to provide the militants with weapons, which include assault rifles, shoulder-fired rocket-propelled grenades and anti-tank missiles.
Rand Paul said in a statement that the “president’s unilateral decision to arm Syrian rebels is incredibly disturbing, considering what little we know about whom we are arming.”
Chris Murphy also argued, “We should be extremely wary of allowing the United States to be drawn into a complicated proxy war that could mire our country for years at a potentially incalculable cost to US taxpayers and America’s reputation at home and abroad.”
Many members of the US Congress remain deeply skeptical about White House plans for transferring weapons to foreign-sponsored militants in Syria, while a number of others have been pressing for military aid to the Takfiris for months.
Washington announced its plans to arm the militants in Syria a day after it claimed that the Syrian army had used chemical weapons in its fight against the militants.
Syria strongly rejects such claims and says the extremists have used chemical weapons on several occasions, including an attack in the region of Khan al-Assal in the northwestern province of Aleppo on March 19, where over two dozen people died.
Turmoil has gripped Syria since March 2011, and many people, including large numbers of Syrian soldiers and security personnel, have been killed in the violence.