The European Union has imposed new sanctions on eight businessmen and two entities affiliated with the Assad regime, according to a statement published by its official website.
In the statement released on Monday, the Council of the European Union said it had added eight prominent businessmen and two entities linked to businessmen and entities subject to the criminal restrictions imposed on the Syrian regime and its supporters.
According to the European Council: “Their activities directly benefited the Assad regime, including through projects located on lands expropriated from persons displaced by the conflict.”
The council’s website said that the list of sanctions against the Assad regime now includes 277 people and 71 entities, targeted with travel bans and the freezing of assets.
The European Union sanctions on the Assad regime include a ban on trade in oil, restrictions on investment, and a freeze on the assets of the Syrian Central Bank present in the European Union.
The new sanctions included:
- Yasser Aziz Abbas, general manager and founding partner of the al-Malak al-Shab company, who is also general manager of Tafawoq Tourism Projects Company and Bajaa Trading Services LLC. Last year, loyalist networks reported a decision by the regime’s General Customs Directorate stipulating the seizure of Abbas’s movable and immovable assets after he was accused of fraud and corruption related to to oil derivatives.
- Maher Burhanuddin al-Imam, general manager of the Tulsa Group, and a founding partner in several Syrian companies, including Tadamon Telecom Company, which he owns 50 percent of, as well as 50 percent of the company’s capital line, according to the Al-Iqtissadi website.
- Amer Foz, from the city of Lattakia, who is the brother of Samer Foz, one of the the most prominent businessman associated with the Assad regime. Amer has been the CEO of ISM International General Trading since 2012.
- Saqr Rustom, nicknamed “the supreme ruler of Homs.” He is the CEO and owner of Damas Development and Real Estate Investment. In recent years, he has led the National Defense Forces supporting the Assad regime in Homs.
- Abdel-Qader Sabra, president of the Chamber of Maritime Navigation in Syria, and one of the founders of the Cham Holding Company, which at one time acted as an alliance between businessmen with the regime and its officials.
- Kheder Ali Taher, who owns a number of companies and co-founded others, most notably Ematel, Citadel for Protection, and Guard and Security Services, which is one of the main security companies owned by Taher, founded in 2017.
- Adel al-Olabi, Governor of Damascus, and the chairman of the Damascus Holding Company, described by regime media as the governorate’s investment arm.
- Wasim Qattan, born in 1976 in Damascus, is director of a number of major companies and mega-projects in Syria. He is currently the head of the Damascus Chamber of Commerce.
- The Qaterji Company, a prominent company which played the role of broker in supplying oil from the Islamic State territories to the Assad regime. The firm is headed by Hossam Qaterji, whom the US Treasury Department has sanctioned due to links to the Islamic State and for buying oil for the Assad regime. Hossam Qaterji also supervised a militia loyal to the regime, known as the Qaterji Group, mainly stationed in Aleppo Governorate.
- Damascus Cham Holding, the main engine for reconstruction projects the regime is planning in Damascus.The company is the result of networking between the public and private sectors in Syria after the war, within a framework that allows private companies to manage state property.
This article was translated and edited by The Syrian Observer. The Syrian Observer has not verified the content of this story. Responsibility for the information and views set out in this article lies entirely with the author.