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Abe, visiting U.S. senators blame Assad regime for worsening situation in Syria

Kyodo

Prime Minister Shinzo Abe met Tuesday with Kirsten Gillibrand and four other U.S. senators, and they agreed that responsibility for the worsening situation in Syria lies with the regime of President Bashar Assad.

Abe emphasized chemical weapons are “highly likely to have been used” in Syria, and Gillibrand, a member of the Democratic Party who represents New York state, said she was saddened by the loss of many innocent lives, according to the Foreign Ministry.

Abe and the U.S. lawmakers also agreed that Japan and the United States should cooperate closely on the issues of North Korea and cyber security, the ministry said.

Gillibrand said the Japan-U.S. security alliance is crucial to the United States and asserted the two countries should coordinate their responses to issues involving North Korea.

“The Japan-U.S. security arrangements are extremely important to the peace and stability of not only Japan but the whole region,” Abe was quoted as saying.

Gillibrand chairs the Senate Armed Services Subcommittee on Personnel.