U.S. Increases Aid to Syrian Rebel Forces, Again

By:  Raven Clabough
04/25/2013
       
U.S. Increases Aid to Syrian Rebel Forces, Again

The United States has announced that it will double its non-lethal assistance to the rebel forces seeking to overthrow Syria's President al-Assad.

After assertions from the Syrian rebels' key supporters that they will increase and expand their support to overthrow President Assad, the United States announced it will double its non-lethal assistance to the rebel forces.

But according to Yahoo News, despite the abundance of aid that the United States and other countries have provided to the rebels, the recent pledge still falls short of their demands. They insisted in a statement, “We appreciate the limited support given by the international community, but it is not sufficient.” The rebel group contends that it requires guns and ammunition, and even military intervention.

“The Syrian National Coalition had sought drone strikes on sites from which the regime has fired missiles, the imposition of no-fly zones and protected humanitarian corridors to ensure the safety of civilians,” writes Yahoo News.

The Obama administration has pledged to provide $123 million in aid to the rebel forces, which may include armored vehicles, body armor, and other defensive military supplies. That would bring the total U.S. help to $250 million.

Secretary of State John Kerry announced the pledge in a written statement and urged other foreign backers to make similar pledges. He also indicated that the United States would work with the Syrian opposition to determine how the money is spent, and added that Washington would also provide $25 million in additional food aid. He continued,

Today, it's safe to say that we are really at a critical moment. The stakes in Syria couldn't be more clear: Chemical weapons, the slaughter of people by ballistic missiles and other weapons of huge destruction. The potential of a whole country, a beautiful country with great people, being torn apart and perhaps breaking up into enclaves (with the) potential of sectarian violence which this region knows there is too much of.

What we are trying to do is to avoid all of that. And we committed to — we recommitted — because we think there are some people who don't believe that we believe it, or are in fact are committed to it.

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