WASHINGTON, Feb 2 (KUNA) -- The US targeted business operations of Hezbollah by designating six individuals and seven entities, each subject to "secondary sanctions" pursuant to the Hezbollah Financial Sanctions Regulations, it was announced Friday.
Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) specifically designated Lebanon-based Jihad Muhammad Qansu, Ali Muhammad Qansu, Issam Ahmad Saad, and Nabil Mahmoud Assaf, and Iraq-based Abdul Latif Saad and Muhammad Badr-Al-Din "for acting for or on behalf of Hezbollah member and financier Adham Tabaja or his company, Al-Inmaa Engineering and Contracting."
Additionally, OFAC designated Sierra Leone-based Blue Lagoon Group LTD and Kanso Fishing Agency Limited, Ghana-based Star Trade Ghana Limited, Liberia-based Dolphin Trading Company Limited (DTC), Sky Trade Company, and Golden Fish Liberia LTD., and Lebanon-based Golden Fish S.A.L. (Offshore) "for being owned or controlled by Ali Muhammad Qansu.
"As a result of today's designations, all property and interests in property of these persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and US persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them," the Treasury stressed.
Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin said in a statement that Hezbollah "is a terrorist organization responsible for the death of hundreds of Americans. It is also Iran's primary proxy used to undermine legitimate Arab governments across the Middle East.
"The Administration is determined to expose and disrupt Hezbollah's networks, including those across the Middle East and West Africa, used to fund their illicit operations," he added.
He affirmed that the Treasury "will continue to sever Hezbollah from the international financial system, and we will be relentless in identifying, exposing, and dismantling Hezbollah's financial support networks globally."
The Treasury stressed that today's actions target the network of Adham Tabaja and Al-Inmaa Engineering and Contracting which OFAC designated as Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs) in June 2015.
It noted that "Tabaja maintained direct ties to senior Hezbollah officials and Hizballah's operational component, the Islamic Jihad."
It added that Al-Inmaa Engineering and Contracting "has provided both financial support and organizational infrastructure to Hezbollah."
Hezbollah was designated by the Department of State as a Foreign Terrorist Organization in October 1997 and as an SDGT in October 2001. It was listed in January 1995 in the Annex to E.O. 12947, "which targets terrorists who threaten to disrupt the Middle East peace process" and also designated in August 2012 pursuant to E.O. 13582, "which targets the Government of Syria and its supporters." (end)