Syrian militants outside a church in the town of Ras al-Ain near the border with Turkey on November 16, 2012
Broad majorities in the US are opposed to America and its allies sending weapons and military equipment to militants in Syria, a poll finds.
The survey, conducted by the Pew Research Center from June 12 to 16 among 1,512 adults, indicated that 70 percent of the respondents opposed arming the Syria militants, The Hill reported on Monday.
The poll also showed that support for sending arms to the militants in Syria has fallen to 20 from 29 percent compared to a similar survey in March. Even the supporters of the idea have their own concerns with 56 percent of them saying the US military is “too overcommitted to get involved in another conflict.”
President Barack Obama on Friday ordered the CIA to supply weapons to the militants, days after the US intelligence community claimed the Syrian government had used chemical arms against the militants and thus crossed Washington’s “red line.”
On May 28, European Union foreign ministers said they would not renew an arms embargo on Syria in order to prepare the ground for sending weapons to the militants.
The move drew strong opposition from Germany and Austria. "The EU should hold the line. We are a peace movement and not a war movement," Austrian Foreign Minister Michael Spindelegger said.
In the latest reaction against the EU decision, Syrian President Bashar al-Assad said European countries will "pay the price" if they send weapons to militants.
"If the Europeans deliver weapons, then Europe's backyard will become terrorist-like, and Europe will pay the price for it," Assad was quoted as saying by German daily Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung on Monday.