An executive order signed by President Obama this week would sanction companies and individuals that provide telecommunication technology to Iran and Syria used to carry out human rights abuses.
The April 23 executive order is aimed at thwarting the governments of Syria and Iran in particular for their “malign use of technology” to track, monitor and disrupt antigovernment protesters.
“We are haunted by the atrocities we did not stop,” the president said at a Holocaust Days of Remembrance event at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington. Stopping such tragedies is “a core national security interest and core moral responsibility of the United States of America.”
Technology should be used to “empower citizens, not to suppress them,” he said.