A letter from eleven USA Congressmen to President Clinton

(this letter was sent to the USA President on March 24 2000)

Dear Mr. President:
As you prepare to meet with Syrian President Hafez Assad this week in Geneva, we urge you to speak with him forthrightly about the need for Syria to fulfill the requirements of the "Taef Accord". Syria is bound by the agreement to redeploy and ultimately withdraw its 30.000 troops throughout Lebanon, and must be held to that standard.

We support your effort to facilitate negotiations between Israel and Syria, but wish to again underscore the critical requirement that Congress be thoroughly consulted about any US commitments to the parties.

UN security council resolution 520 calls for the "entire respect of the sovereignty, territorial integrity, unity and political independence of Lebanon", with Israel expected to leave Lebanon by July, attention should now turn to the Syrian occupation of Lebanon, which stifles Lebanese political culture and which prevents its society from flourishing.

Lebanon deserves its freedom and the right to determine its own future. This will only happen if all foreign forces leave Lebanon. We therefore strongly urge you to impress upon President Assad the need to redeploy and withdraw Syrian armed Forces and security personnel out of Lebanon pursuant to the "Taef Accord".

Sincerely
Eliot Engel ( Member of Congress)
Benjamin Gilman ( Member of Congress)

N.B: Nine other Congressmen signed the letter.