The President took these actions to deal with the unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States constituted by the actions of the Government of Syria in supporting terrorism, maintaining its then-existing occupation of Lebanon, pursuing weapons of mass destruction and missile programs, and undermining United States and international efforts with respect to the stabilization and reconstruction of Iraq.
The regime’s brutality and repression of the Syrian people, who have been calling for freedom and a representative government, not only endangers the Syrian people themselves, but also generates instability throughout the region. The Syrian regime’s actions and policies, including with respect to chemical weapons, supporting terrorist organizations, and obstructing the Lebanese government’s ability to function effectively, continue to foster the rise of extremism and sectarianism and pose an unusual and extraordinary threat to the national security, foreign policy, and economy of the United States. As a result, the national emergency declared on May 11, 2004, and the measures to deal with that emergency adopted on that date in Executive Order 13338; on April 25, 2006, in Executive Order 13399; on February 13, 2008, in Executive Order 13460; on April 29, 2011, in Executive Order 13572; on May 18, 2011, in Executive Order 13573; on August 17, 2011, in Executive Order 13582; on April 22, 2012, in Executive Order 13606; and on May 1, 2012, in Executive Order 13608, must continue in effect beyond May 11, 2020.
Therefore, in accordance with section 202(d) of the National Emergencies Act, 50 U.S.C. 1622(d), I am continuing for 1 year the national emergency declared with respect to the actions of the Government of Syria.
In addition, the United States condemns the Assad regime’s, and its Russian and Iranian enablers’, brutal violence and human rights abuses. The United States calls on the Assad regime and its backers to stop its violent war, enact a nationwide ceasefire, enable the unobstructed delivery of humanitarian assistance to all Syrians in need, and negotiate a political transition in Syria that will forge a credible path along the lines of United Nations Security Council Resolution 2254. The United States will consider changes in the composition, policies, and actions of the Government of Syria in determining whether to continue or terminate this national emergency in the future.
This notice shall be published in the Federal Register and transmitted to the Congress.
May 7, 2020.