EU implements UN additions to its terrorism and CAR sanctions

The EU has added Fared Saal to its sanctions on ISIL & Al-Qaida, implementing a UN listing from earlier this month.  Fared Saal is said to be a member of ISIL, who has taken part in attacks that led to the deaths of large numbers of civilians. See Commission Implementing Regulation 2017/1094 amending Council Regulation 881/2002.

It has also implemented the UN’s listing of Hissene Abdoulaye on its sanctions against the Central African Republic (see previous blog).  He is said to have become one of the main leaders of armed militias in the country’s capital Bangui. See Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2017/1090 implementing Council Regulation 224/2014 and Council Implementing Decision 2017/1103 implementing Council Decision 2013/798/CFSP.

ECJ rejects Faqih / Sanabel appeal

We previously reported on the General Court’s Kadi(2) type judgment (link here) rejecting the application for annulment brought by the Sanabel Relief Agency Ltd and 3 people connected with it (Al-Faqih, Abdrabbah, & Nasuf) on the grounds that the Commission had complied with its Kadi (2) duties of independently assessing the evidence for EU implementations of UN terrorist sanctions listings, the applicants had been sent narrative summaries, the EU had assessed their responses and the UN’s reasons, and the applicants had eventually been de-listed.  The Sanabel Relief Agency had ceased to exist so the Court also held that it had no continuing interest in the proceedings. The Court of Justice has just affirmed that judgment on appeal in Case C-19/16 P Faqih & Ors v Commission (Council intervening) – link to the appeal judgment here.  The ECJ has held that the Court below was entitled to have held that:

  1. Sanabel Relief agency no longer existed in law and therefore did not have capacity to bring legal proceedings before the EU court;
  2. the applicants’ proportionality plea was insufficiently particularised; and
  3. the Commission had properly discharged its Kadi (2) duties.

Arab states not seeking to include their latest sanctions listings on UN list

It is reported that Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE, who imposed sanctions on Qatar and several Qatar-linked people and entities last week (see previous blog), are not also seeking to have them included on the UN’s sanctions list. The new listings, which affect 59 people and 12 entities said to be linked to terrorism, came days after the 4 states cut off their relations with Qatar, having accused it of supporting terrorism and Iran.  However, while it would be difficult to gain the required support for the listings at UN level, Egypt’s Foreign Minister Sameh Shoukry suggested on Wednesday that there may be more Qatar-linked sanctions to come.

Qatar-linked AQ sanctions imposed by Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and UAE

Bahrain, Egypt, Saudi Arabia, and the UAE have jointly designated 59 people and 12 entities as supporters of al-Qaida and associated organisations.  Many of the new listings are Qatar-linked people and entities, and follow a decision by those 4 countries last week to bar all traffic with Qatar, eject its diplomats, and require all Qatari citizens to leave within 14 days, in response to what they say is Qatar’s support for the Muslim Brotherhood and other groups they deem to be terrorist organisations. A list of the newly designated people and entities is here.

OFAC designates financial supporters of several terrorist groups

OFAC has sanctioned 3 people and 1 entity, all based in Pakistan, said to be involved in leading or financially supporting the terrorist organisations Jama’at ul Dawa al-Qu’ran, the Taliban, al-Qaida, and ISIL.  They are Hayat Muhammad, Ali Turab, Inayat Rahman, and the Welfare and Development Organisation of Jamaat-Ud-Dawah for Qur’an and Sunnah.

In its press release, the US Treasury said that the individuals are “opportunistic and willing to work with extremist organisations, even those ideologically opposed to one another, to help them deepen their foothold in the region”.

USA – Iran, ISIL, & Al-Qaida designations

Iran

OFAC has sanctioned the Tehran Prisons Organisation and a senior official within Iran’s State Prison Organisation, Sohrab Soleimani, in connection with alleged serious human rights abuses in Tehran’s Evin Prison. Tehran Prisons Organisation, which Soleimani previously headed up and now oversees in his current role, is allegedly responsible for abuses against political prisoners housed in Evin Prison, including an incident in April 2014 in which several political prisoners are said to have been brutally attacked by prison staff.  In its press release, the US Treasury said that the US would “vigorously exercise its sanctions authorities outside the scope of the JCPOA to counter the Iranian government’s support for terrorism, ballistic missile programme, regional destabilisation, and human rights abuses”.

ISIL & Al-Qaida

Two ISIL financial facilitators in Libya, Ali al-Safrani and Abd Zarqun, and Algerian ISIL supporter Hamma Hamani have been designated by OFAC as Specially Designated Global Terrorists.  Al-Safrani and Abd Zarqun are said to be high-level leaders within ISIL, and Hamani is said to have supported ISIL and trafficked weapons in Libya. The Treasury’s press release is here.

In addition, the US State Department has designated 2 Canadian citizens, Tarek Sakr and Farah Shirdon, as Specially Designated Global Terrorists. Sakr is said to have conducted sniper training in Syria and been linked to Syrian al-Qaida affiliate al-Nusrah Front. Shirdon is allegedly a prominent ISIL fighter and recruiter who has also been involved in fundraising. The State Department’s press release is here.

EU updates Yemen & ISIL/Al-Qaida listings

The EU has updated the listings of 4 people listed on its sanctions against Yemen, implementing changes made by the UN to its own sanctions listings.  The people are Abdullah Hakim, Abd Al-Houthi, Ali Saleh, and Ahmed Saleh. See Implementing Regulation 2017/628 implementing Regulation 1352/2014 and Implementing Decision 2017/634 implementing Decision 2014/932/CFSP.

It has also updated 2 listings under its ISIL & Al-Qaida sanctions, also implementing UN changes.  The listings are for Radi El Ayashi and the Mujahidin Indonesian Timur.  See Implementing Regulation 2017/630 and Implementing Regulation 2017/637 respectively amending Regulation 881/2002.

US designates 7 more people for ties to ISIL

OFAC

OFAC has designated 2 people, Syria-based Muhammad Tamtomo and Syria/Iraq-based Muhammad Jedi, as Specially Designated Global Terrorists for allegedly providing financial and operational support to ISIL.  Specifically, they are said to have supported ISIL recruitment and attack-planning in Indonesia, Malaysia, and elsewhere in Southeast Asia.

OFAC’s press release is here.

State Department

The State Department has designated 5 people as SDGTs for their involvement with ISIL. Among them are British national Anjem Choudary, who was sentenced to imprisonment in September 2016 for acting as a key figure in ISIL’s recruitment drive.

The State Department’s press release is here.