European Union sanctions 16 more Syria officials over chemical weapons use

Bruno Cirelli
Luglio 17, 2017

These persons include 8 high-ranking military officials and 8 scientists involved in chemical weapons proliferation and delivery.

Today's decision brings to 255 persons the total number of persons targeted by a travel ban and an assets freeze for being responsible for the violent repression against the civilian population in Syria, benefiting from or supporting the regime, and/or being associated with such persons.

In April, the White House already sanctioned 271 employees of the center over their alleged involvement in the chemical weapons production in Syria. The sanctions issued by the organization now extend to 255 people who are prevented from traveling to European Union territory and whose assets have been frozen, along with 67 companies linked to Syrian President Bashar Al Assad.

The latest round of sanctions by the European Union comes after the UN's chemical watchdog, the OPCW, ruled that sarin gas had been used in the town of Khan Sheikoun, inside the province of Idlib.

In an interview with teleSUR, Assad alleged that USA officials are lying about their claims regarding Syria having chemical weapons, saying that armed opposition groups and their sponsors are to blame and also recalled Secretary of State Colin Powell's infamous testimony at the United Nations in 2003 where he said that Iraq was in possession of weapons of mass destruction, only to be revealed as a lie years after the US invasion of Iraq.

The EU will release the names of those hit by the sanctions on Tuesday, it said.

Johnson said "that shows the resolve of the United Kingdom and the rest of friends in Europe" in countering chemical attacks in Syria.

The council said 67 entities had also been subjected to an assets freeze and sanctions including an oil embargo, restrictions on investments and a freeze on the Syrian central bank.

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