Assad says US needs terrorists, uses sanctions to support them

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Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad says the US needs terrorists on the ground in the region, and levied its recent draconian sanctions against Syria as a means of throwing support behind them.

“The US needs terrorists in the region, on top [of them]Daesh,” he said in an address at the People’s Palace in the capital Damascus on Wednesday, according to the official Syrian Arab News Agency (SANA). The Takfiri terrorist group, the most violent of the type ever known to the world, invaded the country and neighboring Iraq in 2014. The group that was defeated by Damascus and its allies three years later, has been found in receipt of US support across many reports and by many regional officials. Assad said Washington lent force to “the Caesar Act, [because]it wanted to express its support to the terrorists,” referring to the most recent bout of the US sanctions on Syria. The much-condemned Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act came into effect on June 17, six months after it was signed into law by US President Donald Trump, targeting individuals and businesses anywhere in the world that operate either directly or indirectly within the sphere of Syria’s economy.

In Damascus, people condemn US anti-Syria sanctions
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US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo called the bans “the beginning of what will be a sustained campaign of economic and political pressure to deny” the Syrian government “revenue.” The measures are meant to prevent the government “from securing a military victory,” US Ambassador to the UN Kelly Craft said that month amid Syria’s ongoing battle against foreign-backed militancy and terrorism. Assad, however, asserted that the war will not prevent the country from assuming its duties, and attributed all of the country’s gains against the foreign-backed mercenaries so far to supporting the country’s army, SANA reported. Washington’s blockade, he advised, was to be confronted through boosting domestic production and self-reliance.

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