Syria Spillover: The Growing Threat of Terrorism and Sectarianism in the Middle East and Ukraine Update: Hearing Before the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations, One Hundred and Thirteenth Congress, Second Session, March 6, 2014   [open pdf - 1MB]

This testimony compilation is from the March 6, 2014 hearing, "Syria Spillover: The Growing Threat of Terrorism and Sectarianism in the Middle East and Ukraine Update" before the U.S. Senate Committee on Foreign Relations. The following is from the Opening Statement of Chairman Menendez: "As we enter year-three of the Syria crisis, headlines coming out of the region are no longer limited to the violence within Syria -- but to the increasing spread of violence across Syria's borders -- especially into Lebanon and Iraq. Of great concern is the proliferation of Al Qaeda affiliates and splinter groups, and the increasingly sectarian rhetoric fueling the increased violence that offers new opportunities for Al Qaeda to gain footholds in local communities. It opens the door for an Iranian sponsored terrorist network to justify their presence as the protector of the region's Shias while bolstering the Assad regime and antagonizing Arab states. The spillover from Syria is dangerous and troubling. In Lebanon there's been an alarming uptick in high-profile bombings -- many claimed by the Al Qaeda affiliated Abdullah Azzam Brigades. At the same time, Hezbollah, purportedly protecting the Lebanese Shia community, is now overextended in Syria, protecting the Assad regime." Statements, letters, and materials submitted for the record include those of the following: William J. Burns, Derek Chollet, Matthew G. Olsen, Daveed Gartenstein-Ross, and Matthew Levitt.

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