On December 28, 2023, in response to the Houthis’ continued attacks against commercial shipping vessels in the Red Sea and the Gulf of Aden, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control designated additional members of the Sa’id al-Jamal network for allegedly facilitating the flow of Iranian financial assistance to Houthi forces. Al-Jamal, who was designated by the US in 2021, is an Iran-based financial facilitator for the Houthis and the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (“IRGC-QF”). On December 7, 2023, OFAC designated 13 members of al-Jamal’s network for allegedly providing millions of dollars’ worth of foreign currency to the Houthis that was allegedly generated from the sale and shipment of Iranian commodities.
The new designees include three exchange houses in Yemen and Türkiye, and one individual, Nabil Ali Ahmed Al-Hadah, the president of the Currency Exchangers Association in Houthi-controlled areas in Sanaa, who allegedly serves as a financial intermediary transferring funds to and from Yemen for al-Jamal’s network. The designations were made pursuant to EO 13224, as amended, which targets terrorist groups and their supporters. As a result of these designations, all property and interests in property of the designated persons within the United States or within the possession or control of a US person are blocked, and US persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions involving a designated person. Entities owned 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.