ADL: U.S.-Russia Agreement on Syria “An Ambitious but Hopeful First Step"

New York, NY, September 16, 2013 … The Anti-Defamation League (ADL) today welcomed the framework agreement between the United States and Russia to eliminate Syria’s cache of chemical weapons by 2014, calling it “an ambitious but hopeful first step” in ensuring that the regime will never again use chemical weapons against its civilian population or enable them to be used by others.  The League said that “only the credible threat of force can bring about a diplomatic solution.”

Barry Curtiss-Lusher, ADL National Chair, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, issued the following statement:

While we remain cautious about President Assad’s true commitment to disarmament, we welcome this agreement as an ambitious but hopeful first step to eliminate chemical weapons in Syria.  Only time will tell if President Assad intends to fully implement this agreement, or will manipulate the process to delay its implementation.

We firmly believe President Assad and his Russian interlocutors took seriously President Obama’s threat of force, and that only the continued credible threat of force will ensure the removal and destruction of the Syrian government’s chemical weapons stockpile.

ADL previously expressed horror and outrage at the deployment of chemical weapons against Syrian civilians and welcomed President Obama’s demonstration of leadership in response.

The Anti-Defamation League was founded in 1913 to stop the defamation of the Jewish people and to secure justice and fair treatment to all. Today it is the world’s leading organization combating anti-Semitism, exposing hate groups, training law enforcement on hate crimes, developing anti-bias education programs for students, countering cyber-hate and relentlessly pursuing equal rights for all.