US, France Sanction Syria’s Chemical Program Suppliers

The United States has sanctioned eight people and five entities that helped form key parts of a procurement network for Syria’s chemical weapons program, US officials said Wednesday.

The move, which comes as part of a coordinated action with France, targets the procurement network for Syria’s Scientific Studies and Research Center (SSRC), which the US Treasury Department said is the agency responsible for developing chemical weapons.

“Syria’s horrific use of chemical weapons, including attacks against innocent women and children, remains deeply embedded in our minds,” Sigal Mandelker, Treasury’s undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said in a statement.

“Today, we are continuing our campaign to stop the Assad regime’s ruthless attacks by targeting the procurement networks that have supported its chemical weapons program.”

France on Sunday renewed an asset freeze on 24 entities and individuals from the same network for providing an array of support to the SSRC, US officials said.

Among the entities targeted by Treasury sanctions are a Lebanon-based company called Electronics Katrangi Trading, which has operations in Syria, China, Egypt and France and “has provided, or attempted to provide, financial, material, technological, or other support for, or goods or services in support of, the SSRC.”

The sanctions also target Lebanon-based Top Technologies SARL, which specializes in the import and export of electronic components.

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