US Senate passes 2 Hizballah sanctions Bills


This month, the US Senate passed 2 Bills targeting Hizballah: 

1.      The Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2018 amends its 2015 legislation to impose sanctions on: (i) foreign persons that knowingly assist in, or provide support for, fundraising or recruitment activities for Hizballah; (ii) agencies of foreign governments that provide Hizballah with financial support, arms or other assistance; and (iii) Hizballah networks, by reason of its narcotics trafficking and significant transnational criminal activities.

2.      The Sanctioning the Use of Civilians as Defenseless Shields Act imposes sanctions (asset freeze and travel restrictions) on each foreign individual and entity that is a member of, or acts on behalf of, Hizballah and that is responsible for, or complicit in, the use of human shields, as well as each foreign person, entity, or instrumentality of a foreign state that has supported or facilitated such person or entity.

Both Bills will become law once signed by President Donald Trump.

Update: On 25 October 2018, President Donald Trump signed the Hizballah International Financing Prevention Amendments Act of 2018 into law. See White House press release.

USA & Gulf States sanction Taliban facilitators & Iranian supporters

Terrorist.jpgToday, the 7-member nations* of the Terrorist Financing and Targeting Center (TFTC) sanctioned 8 individuals “associated with the Taliban, including those facilitating Iranian support to bolster the terrorist group”.

OFAC designated the following as Specially Designated Global Terrorists, pursuant to Executive Order 13224 (asset freezes imposed): Mohammad Ebrahim Owhadi; Esma’il Razavi; Abdullah Samad Faroqui; Mohammad Daoud Muzzamil; Abdul Rahim Manan; Abdul Aziz; Sadr Ibrahim; and Hafiz Abdul Majid.

TFTC member states also designated Naim Barich for “managing the Taliban’s relationship with Iran”. The US previously designated Naim Barich under the US Kingpin Act in November 2012. See OFAC Notice and US Treasury press release.

*(1) Bahrain; (2) Kuwait; (3) Oman; (4) Qatar; (5) Saudi Arabia; (6) UAE; and (7) USA

OFAC sanctions Iraqi money services business over ISIS support

US Treasury Building2OFAC has designated Afaq Dubai, an Iraq-based money services business (MSB), as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist pursuant to Executive Order 13224 (US asset freeze) for “moving money for [ISIS]”. The US Treasury press release says “[c]ontrary to what the name may imply, this MSB is located in Iraq and does not have any branches in the United Arab Emirates”. See OFAC Notice.

UN & EU add Anjem Choudary to terrorism sanctions list

UN4Yesterday, the UN Security Council announced that it has added British national Anjem Choudary to its ISIL (Da’esh) & Al-Qaida sanctions list for “recruiting for” and “otherwise supporting acts or activities of” ISIL (asset freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo imposed). The UN Narrative Summary of Reasons for Listing notes that Mr Choudary was sentenced in the UK (September 2016) for inviting support for ISIL, and that since his conviction and imprisonment, he has not made any statements denouncing his allegiance to and support for ISIL.

On 18 October 2018, the EU implemented this UN listing, see Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1562.

EU extends ISIL & Al-Qaida sanctions by 1 year

EU5.jpgYesterday, the EU extended its ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida sanctions measures until 31 October 2019. The EU also added Algerian national Hocine Bouguetof to the sanctions list (travel ban, asset freeze, and arms embargo imposed). See Council Decision (CFSP) 2018/1540 and Council Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1539.

Independent Reviewer report on Terrorism Acts

Max Hill QCMax Hill QC, the UK Independent Reviewer of Terrorism Legislation, has published his final annual report (10 October) on the operation of the Terrorism Acts in 2017. It covers proscribed organisations (5 organisations were proscribed in 2017) and the replacement of the current Terrorist Asset Freezing Act 2010 with the Sanctions and Anti-Money Laundering Act 2018 for terrorist asset freezing in the UK. The report also makes a number of recommendations on TPIMs and port and border controls.

OFSI renews 2 TAFA designations

HMTreasury.jpgYesterday, OFSI renewed the terrorist listings of two entities – Ejército de Liberación Nacional (ELN) and Sendero Luminoso (SL) – under the Terrorist Asset-Freezing etc Act 2010 (TAFA).

The OFSI Notice explains that a renewed designation may be appealed to the High Court (or, in Scotland, to the Court of Session) under section 26 of TAFA.

UN & EU sanction Al-Qaida’s Mali branch JNIM

UNSCYesterday (4 October), the UN Security Council added Jama’a Nusrat ul-Islam wa al-Muslimin (JNIM) to its ISIL (Da’esh) and Al-Qaida sanctions list. According to the UN summary of reasons for listing, JNIM has “described itself as the official branch of Al-Qaida in Mali”. It will now be subject to a UN asset freeze and arms embargo. See UN press release.

On 5 September 2018, the US imposed an asset freeze on JNIM by designating it as a Foreign Terrorist Organisation and as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (see previous blog).

On 8 October 2018, the EU implemented the UN listing of JNIM, see Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2018/1494.