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Biden sends letter to congressional leadership explaining justification for Syria strike

February 27, 2021. Summarized by summa-bot.

Compression ratio: 51.5%. 2 min read.

President Joe Biden sent a letter to congressional leadership Saturday explaining the reasoning behind Thursday's airstrike in Syria, which has been criticized by some Democrats in the latest fight between the executive and legislative branches over war powers.

(CNN)President Joe Biden sent a letter to congressional leadership Saturday explaining the reasoning behind Thursday's airstrike in Syria, which has been criticized by some Democrats in the latest fight between the executive and legislative branches over war powers.

In the letter, which fulfills an obligation of the President listed in the War Powers Resolution, Biden outlined the details of the strike -- the US military's first known action under his administration -- and said the action was "pursuant to the United States' inherent right of self-defense as reflected in Article 51 of the United Nations Charter. "

"At my direction, on February 25, 2021, United States forces conducted a targeted military strike against infrastructure in eastern Syria used by Iran-supported non-state militia groups," Biden wrote in the Saturday letter to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Sen. Patrick Leahy, the president pro tempore of the Senate.

Biden wrote that the US "always stands ready to take necessary and proportionate action in self-defense, including when, as is the case here, the government of the state where the threat is located is unwilling or unable to prevent the use of its territory by non-state militia groups responsible for such attacks. "

His administration has said the strike was in response to Iranian-backed militia groups' rocket attacks on American forces in recent weeks, and was backed by Article II of the Constitution, as well as the Charter of the United Nations.

But some Democrats said that Congress has not passed an authorization for the use of military force specifically in Syria, and previous resolutions passed in 2001 and 2002 were designed for attacking those responsible for the September 11, 2001 attacks and to go into war with Iraq.

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