Syria has been listed by the State Department as among the State Sponsors of Terrorism since December 29, 1979. Is Obama going to remove that designation? On what grounds?
“Obama preparing to lift sanctions against Syria,” from the World Tribune, February 9 :
NICOSIA “” President Barack Obama has decided on a new U.S. ambassador to Syria and is expected to lift sanctions against a nation charged with aiding Al Qaida in Iraq and secretly building a nuclear reactor with North Korean assistance.
Diplomatic sources said Obama, in consultation with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton, has asked Frederic Hof to become the first U.S. ambassador to Damascus since 2005. The sources said Hof, a member of the National Advisory Committee of the Middle East Policy Council, agreed to take the post.
“There will be an announcement very soon,” a diplomat said.
The sources said the Obama administration was expected to suspend U.S. sanctions on Syria’s military and energy programs.