07:38 GMT +321 September 2019
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    US Lawmakers Introduce Bipartisan Bill to Stop US Arms Supplies to Terrorists

    © AFP 2019 / SAUL LOEB
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    Days after US President Barack Obama waived restrictions on arms supplies to US allies in Syria, a bipartisan group of lawmakers in Washington introduced a bill to forbid arming terrorist groups in the Middle East and worldwide.

    The chasm between the legislative and the executive branch of the US government widens, as mere days after US President Barack Obama waived restrictions on arms supplies to "moderate rebels" in Syria, a group of lawmakers introduced a bill that would forbid such supplies.

    A group of lawmakers from the House of Representatives, from both parties, have introduced Stop Arming Terrorists Act (SATA), a bill to forbid the US government from providing arms, funds, and training to organizations that have been designated ‘terrorist.'

    The bill was prepared by representatives Peter Welch (D — VT), Barbara Lee (D — CA), Dana Rohrabacher (R — CA), and Thomas Massie (R — KY), and introduced by Tulsi Gabbard (D — HI).

    According to Gabbard, sponsorship of terrorism for individuals is forbidden in the United States. However, this does not apply to the US government itself, who has for years been providing funds, arms, and training to groups linked to terrorists in Syria.

    The bill is reportedly aimed to stop a CIA program to smuggle weapons to US allies and thence to Syrian rebels, a so-called moderate opposition in the war-torn country, willing to do Washington's bidding. According to the text of the document, the bill explicitly forbids providing support to Daesh, al-Qaeda and the Nusra Front, also known as Jabhat Fateh al-Sham, but also extends this ban to their allies, as well as foreign nations known to support these groups. The policies behind the bill are supported by President-elect Donald Trump, based on comments he made during his campaign.

    A paragraph in the bill includes Saudi Arabia, Turkey and Qatar, which have openly backed a number of the rebel groups targeted, according to AntiWar.com.

    Earlier on Friday, Kremlin's Press Secretary Dmitry Peskov suggested that Obama's waiver on arms supplies could lead to advanced weaponry getting into the hands of terrorists, creating a global security threat.

    Despite numerous efforts by Syrian and Russian negotiators, the US government has repeatedly failed to clearly delineate the difference between Washington's "moderate opposition" allies and terrorists.


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    terrorism, training, arms, funding, bill, Al-Nusra Front, Daesh, US House of Representatives, Tulsi Gabbard, Donald Trump, Barack Obama, United States
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