On August 20, 2020, the Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) and the Department of State sanctioned six Syrian individuals in President Basher al-Assad’s office and the Syrian Ba’ath Party who have contributed to the oppression of the Assad regime. The sanctioned individuals are: (1) President al-Assad’s media adviser, Luna al Shibl; (2) senior Ba’ath party official Mohamad Amar Saati; (3) Yasser Ibrahim, National Defense Forces commander; (4) Fadi Saqr, 42nd Brigade commander; (5) Brigadier General Ghaith Dalah; and (6) Samer Ismail, Tiger Forces Haider Regiment commander. In a lengthy press release providing background details on each individual, Secretary of State Mike Pompeo stated, “While these Assad regime supporters prolong the brutal Syrian conflict, the United States and its international partners are standing by the Syrian people calling for peace. We support efforts to convene the UN-facilitated, Syrian-led Constitutional Committee and hope all participating recommit themselves to building a peaceful future for Syria.”
As a result of this action, these persons and entities have been placed on the Specially Designated Nationals (SDN) List and all property and interests in property of these persons that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons must be blocked and reported to OFAC. OFAC has indicated in its press release that any non-U.S. persons that engage in certain transactions with these designated persons may also be exposed to sanctions including designation on the SDN List.