ADDS DETAILS THROUGHOUT
By Beyza Binnur Donmez
ANKARA (AA) – The US slapped new sanctions on Syria's Bashar al-Assad regime, designating Assad's adult son Hafez, State Department announced Wednesday.
"Today, the State Department and Treasury Department continued the United States’ sanctions campaign against the Assad regime by releasing 14 new designations under the Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act and other authorities," State Secretary Mike Pompeo said in a statement. "Among today’s actions, we are also designating Bashar al-Assad's adult son Hafez al-Assad…"
The designations are named the Hama and Maarat Al-Numan sanctions to remember the victims of two of the Assad regime's most notorious atrocities, which occurred in 2011 and 2019.
Scores of peaceful protesters were killed in Hama in 2011, while 42 people died in 2019 after the Syrian regime bombed a marketplace.
Zuhair Tawfiq al-Assad and his son Karam, the First Division of the Syrian Arab Army and Wassim Anwar Al-Qattan are among the designation list.
Al-Qattan's companies Muruj Cham Investment and Tourism Group, Adam Trading and Investment LLC, Intersection LLC, Wassim Kattan LLC and Larosa Furniture are also listed for their links and support to the Syrian regime.
The Qasioun Mall, Al-Jalaa Hotel, Massa Plaza Mall, and the Yalbagha Complex are blacklisted as well.
"We will continue to hold Bashar al-Assad and his regime accountable for their atrocities, while keeping the memory of their victims alive," Pompeo said. "The Assad regime and those who support it have a simple choice: take irreversible steps toward a lasting political solution to end the Syrian conflict as called for by UNSCR 2254 or face new tranches of crippling sanctions."
Syria has been mired in a vicious civil war since early 2011, when the Assad regime cracked down on pro-democracy protests.
Hundreds of thousands of people have been killed since and more than 10 million displaced, according to UN figures.