Chairman of the House Foreign Relations Committee Benjamin Gilman has protested the decision—which was taken last August in a bid to encourage Syria to continue talking peace with Israel—and urged equal treatment for all ‘rogue regimes”.
The rule was also waived for Sudan, in order to allow American oil companies do $930 million in business there. The major company concerned, Occidental Petroleum, had made substantial contributions to the Clinton election campaign.
State Department spokesman Nicholas Burns said the government places terror supporters into two groups: Iraq, Iran, Libya, Cuba and North Korea comprise one, and Syria and Sudan a second. Along with Iran, the Sudanese regime is considered the world’s top state supporter of terrorism.
Recently the US threatened to cancel aid to South Africa after Pretoria said it was considering a deal to sell military equipment to Syria.
(HA’ARETZ, WASHINGTON POST)
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