Obama Announces New Sanctions Targeting Syria, Iran
Eyder Peralta
Monday, April 23, 2012 at 1:13 PM
Font size: A | A | A | A |

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC.
U.S. President Barack Obama speaks at the Holocaust Museum in Washington, DC.
Pool | Getty Images

The sanctions authorize financial restrictions on companies providing technical help to Damascus and Tehran.

President Obama announced a set of new sanctions that target "Syria and Iran and the 'digital guns for hire' who help them oppress their people with surveillance software and monitoring technology," the AFP reports.

The president made the announcement during a visit to the Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. His visit was the first as president.

"These technologies should be in place to empower citizens, not to repress them," Obama said. "It's one more step that we can take toward the day that we know will come, the end of the Assad regime that has brutalized the Syrian people, and allow the Syrian people to chart their own destiny."

The United States and its allies have already stacked a variety of sanctions against Iran and Syria. These new sanctions, explains The New York Times, put technology providers "on notice," and authorize financial restrictions on "those who provide technology to Tehran and Damascus." The new sanctions, issued through an executive order, also block the owners of those companies from entering the United States.

The Washington Post, which first reported the story, says that the order shows the role technology has played not only to fuel the popular uprisings in North Africa and the Middle East, but to help regimes quell the rebellions.

The Post adds:

"Obama's speech at the most visible U.S. symbol of Holocaust remembrance comes at a time when his policy toward Syria, where a government crackdown has killed thousands of civilians, is under sharp criticism from his Republican rivals for the presidency.

"To demonstrate the priority he places on genocide prevention, Obama used the roughly 20-minute address to reveal that he has asked for the first-ever National Intelligence Estimate — the consensus view of all U.S. intelligence agencies — appraising the potential for mass killings in countries around the world and their implication for U.S. interests.

"The president also announced a set of U.S. development "challenge" grants designed to encourage technology companies to develop new ways to help residents in countries vulnerable to mass killings better detect and quickly alert others to impending dangers. And he will unveil a high-level government panel to serve as a clearinghouse for real-time intelligence, policymaking and other issues related to mass killing."

[Copyright 2012 National Public Radio]



This article is filed in: World News, News

Also in World News  
EU Human Rights Court Could Be Last Stop For German Claiming CIA Kidnapping
Khaled El-Masri says he was mistakenly flown to a secret prison in Afghanistan by the CIA.

Civilians Flee, Soldiers Dig In On Sudanese Frontier
The U.N. is threatening both Sudans with sanctions if they can't reverse their escalating feud.

How To Address France's New, Unmarried First Lady
France's new president was inaugurated Tuesday, and he's moving into the presidential palace with his longtime "companion." Host Michel Martin and the Beauty Shop ladies weigh in on political protocol when it comes to heads of state, politicians and their unmarried significant others.

At Trial, Serb Gen. Mladic Taunts Survivors With Throat-Cutting Gesture
Charged with 11 counts of genocide, crimes against humanity and war crimes, he remains defiant.

Atlanta Opens New International Terminal
Officials hope the facility means more international businesses will choose to locate in Georgia.

Comments  
Post a Comment