The White House, President George W. Bush Click to print this document

For Immediate Release
Office of the Press Secretary
October 30, 2008

Statement by Press Secretary Dana Perino

The United States condemns the sentencing of 12 members of the Damascus Declaration National Council to two and a half years in prison. This judgment once again underscores the Syrian regime's contempt for the fundamental rights and freedoms of their people.

The United States calls on the Syrian government to release immediately the 12 Damascus Declaration members, as well as all other political prisoners. Syria must live up to its obligations under the International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights.

The Syrian regime cannot expect to be treated as a respected member of the international community when it engages in such systematic repression of its own citizens.

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