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SFRC Chairman Menendez Statement on New Sanctions against Assad Regime

WASHINGTON – Senate Foreign Relations Committee Chairman Bob Menendez (D-N.J.) today released the below statement in reaction to the Biden administration’s designation of sanctions pursuant to the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2019 against individuals who have supported the Assad regime’s trafficking of potent amphetamine Captagon. Today’s sanctions follow the recent SFRC and HFAC leadership letter urging the Administration to levy Caesar sanctions to hold the Assad regime accountable for its crimes against the Syrian people.

“I applaud today’s designation of individuals to be sanctioned for their role in supporting the Assad regime’s trafficking of Captagon. In particular, I welcome the Biden administration’s use of authorities under the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2019, its first such designations pursuant to that act. These sanctions are an important and timely recognition of Captagon’s centrality to the Assad regime’s illicit finances and the insidious impact its trafficking has had on Syria’s neighbors, and on the rest of the Middle East and North Africa.

“Furthermore, as I have repeatedly told the Administration, levying congressionally mandated Caesar sanctions is a powerful tool to curb efforts to rehabilitate the Assad regime. I look forward to further Caesar sanctions targeting this regime and its support networks. I also welcome a better understanding of how these and other sanctions fit into the Administration’s Captagon strategy, as required by the FY23 National Defense Authorization Act.”



Juan Pachon