General Turkmani said on Sunday that the US administration did not like Syria's positions on Iraq and on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

"US leaders, rather than acknowledging the failure of their policy in the region, have chosen to make accusations against Syria, blamed for the escalation of Iraqi resistance against the American occupation forces.

"Now they have found a new method to take revenge over Syria's positions and damage its reputation, by passing in Congress what is called the 'Syria Accountability Act'," the general said in a speech at a military academy for girls.

The Republican-led International Relations Committee in the House of Representatives voted 33 to two on Wednesday 8 October for a bill providing for economic sanctions against Syria.

The US has been accusing Syria of supporting terrorism and seeking to develop weapons of mass destruction.

The White House, which two years ago vetoed a similar Congressional move, did not oppose the possibility of sanctions this time.