November 9, 2020

OFAC and State Department impose Syria-related sanctions targeting Syrian petroleum industry

On November 9, 2020, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control designated seven Syrian and Lebanese individuals and ten Syrian entities for their efforts to revive Syria’s deteriorating petroleum industry.  The designations were made pursuant to Executive Orders 13572, 13573, and 13582, and Syrian Sanctions Regulations, 31 CFR Part 542, targeting those who support the Bashar al-Assad regime and its oil production network.  The sanctioned group includes Syrian military officials, members of the Syrian Parliament and government entities in Syria, designated in an effort to dissuade regime loyalists from their continued support of Assad, and to ultimately prevent the flow of future Syrian oil revenues to the Assad regime.  

Concurrent with OFAC’s sanctions, the State Department sanctioned a total of 19 individuals and entities under the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act of 2019; two of the individuals were sanctioned pursuant to Section 2 of Executive Order 13894, “Blocking Property and Suspending Entry of Certain Persons Contributing to the Situation in Syria.”  The Department of State emphasized that sanctions do not target legitimate humanitarian-related trade, stating that the US government will continue to provide humanitarian assistance to the Syrian people.

As a result of these designations, all US property belonging to these individuals and entities is blocked, and transactions and dealings with them are generally prohibited.  In addition, any entity in the US that is owned fifty percent or more by the sanctioned entity or individual is also blocked.  

Department of Treasury Press Release | OFAC Syria Designations | Department of State Press Release