Syria | Syria is Repeatedly Accused of Supporting Terrorist Groups
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- Regional Conflicts Continue Through the End of the Century
- Syria is Repeatedly Accused of Supporting Terrorist Groups
- Syria and Israel Begin Negotiating, but Terrorism and Conflict Continue
- Government Forces Crack Down on Protesters
- Diplomatic Effort to End Violence Stymied by Security Council Vetoes
- Syria Sinks into Civil War
- Opposition Forms New Governing Body
- Several Countries Accuse Assad of Using Chemical Weapons
- Gains by Government and Splintering of Opposition Signal Staying Power of Assad
- Assad Accused of Launching a Chemical Attack
- Splintering of Opposition, Rise of ISIS Cause Concern
- UN-Led Negotiations Begin in Geneva; Rebels Suffer Setbacks
- Assad Re-elected in a Disputed Election
- Obama Authorizes Strikes on ISIS
- Peace Talks Delayed Again as Civil War Rages On; Another Attempt at Peace
Syria is Repeatedly Accused of Supporting Terrorist Groups
The U.S. imposed economic sanctions on the country in May, accusing it of continuing to support terrorism.
In Sept. 2004, a UN Security Council resolution asked Syria to withdraw its 15,000 remaining troops from Lebanon. Syria responded by moving about 3,000 troops from the vicinity of Beirut to eastern Lebanon, a gesture viewed by many as merely cosmetic.
On Feb. 14, 2004, Lebanon's former prime minister Rafik Hariri was assassinated. Many implicated Syria in the death of the popular and independent leader, who staunchly opposed Syrian involvement in Lebanon. Huge Lebanese protests called for Syria's withdrawal from the country, a demand backed by the U.S., EU, and UN. In addition to the anti-Syrian demonstrations, however, there were a number of massive pro-Syrian rallies in Lebanon sponsored by the Shiite militant group Hezbollah. By the end of April, Syria had withdrawn all its troops, ending a 29-year occupation. In October, the UN released a damning report on Hariri's slaying, concluding that the assassination was carefully organized by Syrian and Lebanese intelligence officials, including Syria's military intelligence chief, Asef Shawkat, who is the brother-in-law of President Assad. Syria vehemently denied the charges.
In July 2006, during the Hezbollah-Israeli conflict in Lebanon, Syria was strongly suspected of aiding Hezbollah.