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EU imposes new sanctions on Syria for drug trafficking and rights abuses

April 25, 2023 at 12:00 pm

Army soldiers look at boxes containing confiscated amphetamine and ICE pills on June 23, 2017 [ROBERTO SCHMIDT/AFP via Getty Images)]

The European Union has updated its sanctions list with 25 new individuals and eight entities in Syria linked to the regime of Bashar Al-Assad, including some of his family members, as well as people responsible for drug trafficking, Anadolu has reported. A statement issued by the bloc on Monday said that most of the new entries are responsible for producing and trafficking the amphetamine-based drug Captagon.

The narcotics trade, said the EU, has created a “regime-led business model, enriching the inner circle of the regime and providing it with revenue that contributes to its ability to maintain its policies of repression against the civilian population.”

The sanctions also target the notorious Fourth Division, led by Maher Al-Assad, brother of the regime’s president, due to alleged rights violations.

Sanctions have also been imposed on the General Company for Phosphates and Mines; Castle for Security and Protection LLC; Al-Jabal Security and Protection LLC; and Aman for Protection and Security LLC for their role in supporting the regime. Armed forces officers involved in the massacre of civilians in Tadamon on 16 April, 2013 are also included in the new list.

Last month, the US Treasury and Britain imposed sanctions on six people and two companies that support the Assad regime through drug trafficking.

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