The United States has revoked the visa of a top Syrian diplomat who tried to enter the country to take up a post at the war-torn country’s embassy, a US official said Wednesday.
Ali Daghman was stopped from entering the US when he arrived Tuesday at Dulles airport in Washington, the Wall Street Journal reported.
“We can confirm that his visa has been revoked,” State Department spokeswoman Jen Psaki told reporters, also confirming his identity.
“Given the Syrian regime’s continuing assault on its own people… we have taken steps to further restrict entry of even the few remaining Syrian officials.”
Officials from the Department of Homeland Security did not immediately respond to an AFP inquiry about whether Daghman had already been deported.
Although the US embassy in Damascus has been shuttered due to the fierce fighting in the country as the rebel opposition seeks to topple Syrian President Bashar al-Assad, Syria has maintained its mission in Washington without an ambassador.
The Journal said Daghman was possibly meant to take up the post of charge d’affaires, which would have made him the embassy’s number two.
The United States has insisted for months that the Syrian regime no longer has any legitimacy and is no longer recognised by Washington.
Psaki refused to go into specifics about where and how the Syrian diplomat was granted a visa.
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