Gillibrand Praises Obama's Call for Assad to Resign

Senator Kirsten Gillibrand sent out a statement this morning commending President Obama for calling on Syrian President Bashar al-Assad to step down.

“President Assad has brutally violated the human rights of his own people while killing thousands of Syrian citizens and fostering terrorism across his borders,” Gillibrand said in the statement. “I commend President Obama for sending a clear message to Syria that the Assad regime must respond to the democratic urging of the Syrian people by stepping down.”

Gillibrand had been pushing for Syrian sanctions in recent weeks. She had previously introduced a bill, with Senators Lieberman and Kirk, calling for many of the same measures taken by the administration today, including barring citizens and corporations from doing business with Syria.

The senator’s full statement:

“President Assad has brutally violated the human rights of his own people while killing thousands of Syrian citizens and fostering terrorism across his borders. I commend President Obama for sending a clear message to Syria that the Assad regime must respond to the democratic urging of the Syrian people by stepping down.

“Earlier this month in response to the deplorable violence of the Assad regime, I introduced the Syria Sanctions Act of 2011, a bipartisan bill establishing tough sanctions on Syria’s energy sector, which the regime depends on for its economic survival. This type of action is critical to cripple this abhorrent regime, and while I am very pleased the United States has extended sanctions to Syria’s petroleum sector today, I hope our allies around the world follow suit in the near future.

“It is clear that doing business with Syria’s petroleum sector funds the development of nuclear weapons and support for terrorists who have already harmed Americans and our allies. No company should be allowed to put their profits before our safety.”

Gillibrand Praises Obama's Call for Assad to Resign