U.S. targets Hezbollah leader Nasrallah, deputy Qassem with sanctions

by Reuters
Wednesday, 16 May 2018 19:25 GMT

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WASHINGTON, May 16 (Reuters) - The United States and Gulf partners imposed additional sanctions on Lebanon's Hezbollah leadership on Wednesday, targeting its top two officials, Sayyed Hassan Nasrallah and Naim Qassem.

The U.S. Treasury Department said four other individuals were also sanctioned, as was the group ISIS in the Greater Sahara. It was the third round of sanctions announced by Washington since the United States pulled out of the Iran nuclear deal last week.

Wednesday's sanctions targeted members of the primary decision-making body of Hezbollah, Treasury said in a statement.

"By targeting Hezbollah's Shura Council, our nations collectively rejected the false distinction between a so-called ‘Political Wing' and Hezbollah's global terrorist plotting," Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said.

The measures were imposed jointly by Washington and its partners in the Terrorist Financing and Targeting Center, or TFTC,, which includes Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and United Arab Emirates, it said.

A number of those targeted by the TFTC had been previously blacklisted by the United States.

On Tuesday, the United States imposed sanctions on Iran's central bank governor and an Iraq-based bank for "moving millions of dollars" for Iran's elite Revolutionary Guard.

Last week, the U.S. Treasury imposed sanctions against six individuals and three companies it said were funneling millions of dollars to the Revolutionary Guard's external arm, Quds Force. (Reporting by Tim Ahmann and Doina Chiacu; Editing by Jonathan Oatis and Peter Cooney)

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