U.S. ban on Syria's flight similar to Gaza siege: Syrian official

21:32, June 08, 2010      

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Syrian Transport Minister Y'rob Bader said ban on the Syrian Arab Airlines (Syrianair) by the United States is the same as the siege of Gaza, local website Day Press reported Tuesday.

Bader referred to the ban as oppressive and unjust, indicating it is similar to the Israeli siege against the Palestinian people in Gaza.

"The United States, however, failed to prevent communication between Syria and the world due to an increase of visitors from all over the world since the ratification of U.S. sanctions against Syria in 2004," he said.

In 2004, the then U.S. President George W. Bush ratified sanctions against Syria, accusing Damascus of supporting " terrorist groups" and pursuing missile programs and weapons of mass destruction.

U.S. President Barack Obama adopted the same approach when he announced last month the renewal of sanctions on Syria for a year.

The U.S. ban affects safety of Syrian air passengers, as it dents the Syrian government's ability to renew air fleet, import spare parts or even adopt necessary maintenance procedures.

Source: Xinhua


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