More on Syria’s attempts to placate their restive and growing radical Muslim population. From AP, with thanks to Miriam:
DAMASCUS, Syria (AP) – Syrian President Bashar Assad on Thursday challenged the basis of U.S. sanctions on his country and said he would not expel Palestinian militant groups as demanded by the United States.
Assad disputed the case the Bush administration had made to impose the embargo, saying Syria does not have weapons of mass destruction and there is no evidence of foreign fighters crossing the border from Syria to Iraq.
“We have always asked the administration to give us one passport or one name or evidence of that (border infiltration) happening. So far, we have not had that happen,” Assad told a group of American editors. …
President Bush imposed the sanctions Tuesday. They ban all U.S. exports to Syria except food and medicine and they forbid direct flights between Syria and the United States. The penalties came as a response to allegations that Syria was supporting terrorism and undermining U.S. efforts in neighboring Iraq. Bush signed the order under a law that Congress passed by an overwhelming vote late last year.