"I oppose, at this point, a unilateral American no-fly zone in Syria," Sanders said
Clinton and Sanders have clashed on other policy positions as the race has tightened
Bernie Sanders said Saturday that he opposes an U.S.-implemented no-fly zone in Syria, contrasting himself with Democratic front-runner Hillary Clinton on the issue.
“I oppose, at this point, a unilateral American no-fly zone in Syria which could get us more deeply involved in that horrible civil war and lead to a never-ending U.S. entanglement in that region,” he said in a statement.
“We do not want to make a very complex situation in Syria even worse. I support President Obama’s effort to combat the Islamic State in Syria while at the same time supporting those in Syria trying to overthrow the brutal dictatorship of Bashar Assad,” Sanders added.
On Friday, Clinton recommended that the U.S. implement a no-fly zone in Syria.
“I personally would be advocating for a no-fly zone and humanitarian corridors to stop the carnage from the ground and on the air,” Clinton said on CNN affiliate WHDH.
President Barack Obama distanced himself Friday from his former secretary of state’s position, warning against “easy, low-cost answers” to ending the war.
Asked to respond directly to her suggestion, he said that one’s perspective changes when they become president.
“I think Hillary Clinton would be the first to say that when you’re sitting in the seat that I’m sitting in in the situation room, things look a little bit different. Because she’s been right there next to me,” he said.
He also said, “I also think there’s a difference between running for president and being president.”
The two leading Democratic presidential candidates have clashed on other policy positions as the race has tightened. Sanders has emphasized his opposition to the Iraq War, which Clinton helped authorize as a senator in 2002, and last month, the two traded shots over their education plans.
CNN’s Kevin Liptak, Theodore Schleifer contributed to this report.