Washington, DC (PRWEB) June 18, 2012
The American Syrian Coalition (ASC) today applauded Senator John Cornyn of Texas for blocking the confirmation of the nominee for the Army's top weapons buyer until the Department of Defense (DoD) pledges to take action against Rosoboronexport, a Russian company supplying arms to Syria's Assad regime.
The Army has a $375 million, no-bid contract with Rosoboronexport, Russia's state-run arms trader, to buy 21 Russian-made Mi-17 helicopters for Afghanistan's air force. Cornyn is leading an effort to pressure the DoD to stop doing business with the Russian company.
"While Assad is using air forces supplied by Russia to kill his own people, the US administration was going to approve a deal to buy military helicopters from the same Russian company that is supplying helicopters to Assad's regime," said Dr. Mahmoud Khattab, chairman of the Syrian American Council (SAC). "This is a violation to the sanctions, which prohibits trade with companies that supply arms to the Assad regime, and we are thankful that Senator Cornyn is taking action to stop doing business with Rosoboronexport."
The ASC, formed in April of 2012 to coordinate the efforts of various Syrian-American groups, urged other Senators to join Cornyn's effort to exert pressure on DoD to stop its deals with Russian companies that support the Assad regime. The coalition's members are: the Syrian American Council (SAC), the Syrian Expatriates Organization, the Syrian Emergency Task Force, and United for a Free Syria.
The Syrian American Council (SAC) was founded in 2005 to mobilize Syrian Americans to strengthen civil society in Syria, to promote friendly relations between the Syrian and American peoples, to engage civic and governmental organizations to advance civil liberties, human dignity and democracy in Syria. The organization has represented Syrian Americans to the U.S. State Department, Congress, and in international meetings and councils.