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April 6, 2017 10:58 am

Major US Jewish Groups Urge International Response to Assad Regime Following Deadly Suspected Chemical Weapons Attack in Syria

avatar by Barney Breen-Portnoy

Syrian President Bashar Assad. Photo: via Wikimedia Commons.

A number of major US Jewish groups have issued urgent calls for an international response following the suspected chemical weapons attack in Syria this week — believed to have been carried out by President Bashar Assad’s regime — in which dozens of civilians were killed.

“Once again, the world is sickened by images from Syria showing the gruesome effects of chemical weapons indiscriminately targeting, killing and maiming Syrian civilian children, women and men,” Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations Chairman Stephen M. Greenberg and Executive Vice Chairman and CEO Malcolm Hoenlein said in a statement. “The strongest measures possible must be taken to guarantee all chemical weapons are finally removed from Syria to prevent the possibility of their use in another murderous attack.”

“As Jews, we must not look away, we cannot be silent in the face of such inhumanity,” the statement continued. “It is a moral imperative for all who value human life and decency to demand immediate action to end the atrocities being perpetrated in Syria.”

B’nai B’rith International President Gary P. Saltzman and CEO Daniel S. Mariaschin said their organization was “outraged” over the incident.

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We hold the Syrian regime accountable for this horrendous attack against its own people,” they said. “The world’s eyes are on the [UN Security] Council today, expecting it, not only to express moral outrage, but to take action to end the Syrian regime’s use of these horrendous weapons.”

Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper — the dean and associate dean of the Simon Wiesenthal Center — exhorted US President Donald Trump to “lead an international effort to put the Syrian dictator on trial for crimes against humanity.”

“How many more innocent children have to be gassed and shot before this butcher is brought before the bar of justice?” they asked.

On Tuesday, as reported by The Algemeiner, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu said, “When I saw pictures of babies suffocating from a chemical attack in Syria, I was shocked and outraged. There’s no, none, no excuse whatsoever for the deliberate attacks on civilians and on children, especially with cruel and outlawed chemical weapons. I call on the international community to fulfill its obligation from 2013 to fully and finally remove these horrible weapons from Syria.”

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