DAMASCUS, Syria — Several radical Palestinian factions said it was business as usual for their offices on Sunday, a day after U.S. Secretary of State Colin L. Powell said Syria had begun to clamp down on them.
"This is just talk, it's a storm in a cup because we are merely media offices," Abu Jihad Talaat of Islamic Jihad told Reuters.
"The position of [Syrian President] Dr. Bashar Assad is very clear toward the Palestinian people's rights."
Islamic Jihad has claimed many suicide attacks during the 31-month-old Palestinian uprising in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, saying it is legitimate to resist Israeli occupation. It says its office in Damascus, the Syrian capital, plays no part in such attacks.
After talks with Assad on Saturday, Powell said Syria had taken some measures to rein in militant Palestinian groups, carrying out some "closures," but he gave no details.