US imposes new sanctions on Syria
The Trump administration announced a new set of sanctions targeting Syria’s oil industry on Monday.
A statement from the Treasury Department indicated that a handful of high-ranking Syrian government officials as well as several companies based in Syria and Lebanon would face sanctions under the U.S.’s efforts to punish any entities that do business with Damascus’s petroleum industry.
Among those sanctioned were General Ghassan Jaoudat Ismail, head of Syria’s Air Force Intelligence, and Amer Taysir Khiti, a Syrian representative in the Parliamentary Assembly of the Mediterranean.
“Today’s action complements the international effort to compel the Assad regime to cease the war it is waging against its own people and reinforces the U.S. government’s continued effort to achieve a peaceful, political resolution of the Syrian conflict in line with UN Security Council Resolution 2254. With these actions, the U.S. government is endeavoring to disrupt and dissuade regime loyalists from continuing to support Assad and to hamper the flow of future oil-derived revenue to Assad’s war chest,” the Treasury Department said.
Syria’s oil industry now exists largely under the control of the country’s widely criticized government led by President Bashar Assad, whom the U.S. has called upon to step down. The country underwent a brutal civil war beginning in 2011 that left much of the country’s oil fields damaged or under the control of various militant groups opposed to Assad’s regime. Some oil fields remain under the control of U.S.-backed militants.
U.S.-backed Kurdish forced withdrew from parts of Syria last year after Turkey signaled its intention to occupy parts of the country near the Turkish border in the hopes of resettling thousands of Syrian refugees.