The United States should sanction countries helping Syria, Republican Sen. Marcio Rubio said on Sunday.
"We should be increasing sanctions significantly on Iranian and Russian interests that are helping Assad, and particularly this Boeing deal should be canceled," Rubio told George Stephanopoulos on ABC’s "This Week," referring to a deal Boeing had agreed to last week which would sell $3 billion worth of airplanes to an Iranian airline.
Rubio also said the U.S. should be concerned with suppressing the air defenses of the Assad regime following last week's chemical weapons attack in the Syrian village of Khan Sheikhou which left more than 85 people dead and hundreds more injured. Many blamed Syrian President Bashar al-Assad for the attack, and President Donald Trump acted quickly to send a message that chemical weapons would not be tolerated when he signed off on Friday's U.S. attack in which ships fired more than 50 cruise missiles at the Sharyat Airbase in Syria.
Rubio on Sunday also said he was concerned about the White House’s direction following comments by Secretary of State Rex Tillerson that the U.S. would first and foremost focus on taking down ISIS.
"What I'm telling you is I think the strategy he seems to be outlining is based on assumptions that aren't going to work. There is no such thing as Assad, yes, but ISIS, no. This focus that you can defeat ISIS as long as Assad is there is not true. They are two sides to the same coin," Rubio said. "This idea that we can defeat ISIS and then figure it out, it won't work."
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