Syria

Regional
9:57 am
Thu June 13, 2013

Corker Asks President Obama to Provide Lethal Aid to Syrian Opposition

U.S. Sen. Bob Corker (R-TN)

Tennessee’s junior U.S. Senator is asking the White House to provide arms to certain groups within the Syrian opposition.

Republican Bob Corker wrote a letter to President Obama this week, urging him to allow lethal aid to vetted elements within the opposition who aren’t hardline Islamists.

The Wall Street Journal reports that Corker, the ranking member of the GOP on the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, argued in his letter that providing arms to secular elements in the Syrian opposition would “shift momentum away from radical Islamist groups, the Assad regime and its militias toward more moderate elements and could help alter the balance of power on the ground at a time when negotiations over a political settlement have stalled.”

Some senior U.S. officials told the Journal that Corker’s proposal would have little more than symbolic value at this point, given that arms are already widely available inside Syria.

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