Assad says Trump travel ban targets terrorists, not Syria's people

"I think the aim of Trump is to prevent those people from coming." It was "not against the Syrian people", he said.

By REUTERS
February 16, 2017 10:46
1 minute read.
Assad Trump

Assad and Trump. (photo credit: REUTERS)

 
X

Dear Reader,
As you can imagine, more people are reading The Jerusalem Post than ever before. Nevertheless, traditional business models are no longer sustainable and high-quality publications, like ours, are being forced to look for new ways to keep going. Unlike many other news organizations, we have not put up a paywall. We want to keep our journalism open and accessible and be able to keep providing you with news and analyses from the frontlines of Israel, the Middle East and the Jewish World.

As one of our loyal readers, we ask you to be our partner.

For a symbolic $5 a month you will receive access to the following:

  • A user uxperience almost completely free of ads
  • Access to our Premium Section and our monthly magazine to learn Hebrew, Ivrit
  • Content from the award-winning Jerusalem Repor
  • A brand new ePaper featuring the daily newspaper as it appears in print in Israel

Help us grow and continue telling Israel’s story to the world.

Thank you,

Ronit Hasin-Hochman, CEO, Jerusalem Post Group
Yaakov Katz, Editor-in-Chief

UPGRADE YOUR JPOST EXPERIENCE FOR 5$ PER MONTH Don't show it again

BEIRUT - Syria's President Bashar Assad said President Donald Trump's ban on Syrians entering the United States targeted terrorists, not the Syrian people, appearing to defend the logic of the measure in an interview broadcast on Thursday.

Trump last month issued an executive order, since suspended by a US district judge, that temporarily barred travelers from seven mostly Muslim countries including Syria, as well as imposing an indefinite ban on all Syrian refugees.

Be the first to know - Join our Facebook page.


"It's against the terrorists that would infiltrate some of the immigrants to the West. And that happened. It happened in Europe, mainly in Germany," Assad said in the interview with Europe 1 radio and TF1 television which was recorded on Tuesday in English.

"I think the aim of Trump is to prevent those people from coming." It was "not against the Syrian people", he said.

Trump said his order, which triggered protests at home and abroad and confusion at US and international airports, was intended to prevent militants from entering the United States. His administration is challenging the suspension ruling, which was upheld last week by appeal court judges.

Assad's government has often criticized Western states for their support for Syrian rebel groups, all of which are regarded by Damascus as terrorists, and has warned that such backing will lead to militant attacks around the world.

Trump has not yet set out a clear policy on Syria but has indicated he could cut US support for insurgent groups and has said he wants to mend ties with Russia, whose President Vladimir Putin is Assad's strongest international ally.



Asked directly whether Trump's immigration policy was the right one, Assad did not answer. He also said he had not yet seen what Trump's Syria policy would be.


Related Content

June 24, 2018
Concerns raised southern Syrian regime offensive may spill over to Israel

By SETH J. FRANTZMAN