EU puts 4 Syrians under sanctions over chemical weapons

Military official, 3 scientists have been accused of developing chemical weapons that were later used on civilians in Syria
BRUSSELS: The European Union has placed four people under sanctions for their involvement in the development of chemical weapons that were later used on civilians in Syria, the bloc announced on Monday.
In a statement, the bloc said the four people include a high-ranking military official as well as three scientists.
“Today’s decision brings to 261 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,” the statement said.
The bloc said 67 more entities had also been targeted by an asset freeze.
“Sanctions currently in place against Syria include an oil embargo, restrictions on certain investments, a freeze of the assets of the Syrian Central Bank held in the EU, export restrictions on equipment and technology that might be used for internal repression as well as on equipment and technology for the monitoring or interception of internet or telephone communications,” it added.
“These measures were last extended on 29 May 2017 and are in place until 1 June 2018,” it said.
Syria has been locked in a devastating civil war since March 2011, when the Bashar al-Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests with unexpected ferocity.
While UN officials say hundreds of thousands of people have been killed in the conflict, Syrian regime officials say the death toll is closer to 10,000.
During the conflict, the Assad regime was accused many times by many international actors of targeting Syrian civilians with chemical weapons.–AA

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