Canada Expands Sanctions Against Syria

(No. 283 - October 4, 2011 – 4:15 p.m. ET) Foreign Affairs Minister John Baird today announced new sanctions on Syria’s Assad regime in response to its ongoing and escalating repression of Syrian civilians. The measures announced today further expand Canada’s targeted sanctions against the Syrian regime and those that provide it with support.

“The push for political change has claimed thousands of lives with no sign the violence is letting up,” said Minister Baird. “We are committed to working with our international partners to pressure President Assad to step aside.”

The expanded measures include:

  • travel restrictions and a freeze of assets and prohibition on dealings with members of the regime and those who provide it with support, in addition to those sanctioned in earlier measures;
  • a prohibition on the importation, purchase, acquisition, carrying or shipment of petroleum or petroleum products from Syria; and
  • a prohibition on providing financing for new investment in the oil industry or the acquisition, purchase, supply or importation of petroleum or petroleum products in Syria.

“These measures are not meant to add to the hardship already facing the Syrian people,” said Minister Baird. “Canada stands with the Syrian people in their efforts to secure freedom and democracy. We look forward to a new Syria that respects the rights of its people, and lives in peace with its neighbours.”

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A backgrounder follows.

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Backgrounder – Additional Syria Sanctions

Effective immediately, Canada is imposing a new set of sanctions on the Assad regime and those closest to it.

The additional individuals and entities announced today, and named below, bring the total of those targeted by Canada’s sanctions to 56 individuals and 21 entities.

Individuals

  1. Zoulhima Chaliche
  2. Riyad Chaliche
  3. Khalid Qaddur
  4. Ra’if Al-Quwatli
  5. Hayel Al-Assad
  6. Ali Al-Salim
  7. Rafiq Shahadah
  8. Jami Jami
  9. Hassan Bin-Ali Al-Turkmani
  10. Muhammad Said Bukhaytan
  11. Ali Douba
  12. Nawful Al-Husayn
  13. Husam Sukkar
  14. Muhammed Zamrini
  15. Munir Adanov (Adnuf)
  16. Ghassan Khalil
  17. Mohammed Jabir
  18. Samir Hassan
  19. Fares Chehabi
  20. Emad Ghraiwati
  21. Tarif Akhras
  22. Issam Anbouba
  23. Walid Al-Moallem
  24. Bouthaina Shaaban
  25. Ali Abdul Karim Ali
  26. Tayseer Qala Awwad
  27. Adnan Hassan Mahmoud Zoulhima Chaliche

Entities

  1. Bena Properties
  2. Al Mashreq Investment Fund (AMIF) (also known as Sunduq Al Mashrek Al Istithmari)
  3. Hamcho International (also known as Hamsho International Group)
  4. Military Housing Establishment (MILIHOUSE)
  5. Mada Transport
  6. Cham Investment Group
  7. Real Estate Bank
  8. Cham Holdings
  9. Addounia TV
  10. Ramak Construction
  11. El-tel
  12. Souruh

Canada is also imposing prohibitions on any purchase or transportation of Syrian petroleum or petroleum products; all new investment in the Syrian oil sector; the provision or acquisition of financial services for the purpose of facilitating the importation, purchase or transportation of Syrian petroleum or petroleum products; and the provision or acquisition of financial services for the purpose of investing in the Syrian oil sector.

Context

On May 24, 2011, Canada announced targeted sanctions against the Syrian regime and some designated individuals and entities in response to the ongoing violent crackdown by Syrian military and security forces against Syrians peacefully protesting for democracy and human rights. These previous measures, which were a blend of administrative measures and actions taken under the authority of the Special Economic Measures Act, are consistent with initiatives taken by like-minded states, including the United States and the European Union.

On August 13, 2011, Canada expanded sanctions by seeking to freeze the assets of four additional individuals and two additional entities associated with the Syrian government, and to ensure that those people believed to be inadmissible to Canada are prevented from travelling to Canada. Measures implemented by Canada include a prohibition on dealing in the property of listed individuals and entities—including the provision of financial services and making property available for their benefit—and travel restrictions.

Canadian measures

  1. Travel restrictions: Canada will ensure that persons associated with the Syrian government who are believed to be inadmissible to Canada are prevented from travelling to Canada.
  2. An asset freeze: Canada will impose an asset freeze against people associated with the current Syrian regime and entities involved in security and military operations against the Syrian people.
  3. A ban on specific exports and imports: Canada will place a ban under the Export and Import Permits Act on the export from Canada to Syria of goods and technology that are subject to export controls. These items include arms, munitions, and military, nuclear and strategic items that are intended for use by the Syrian armed forces, police or other governmental agencies.
  4. Suspension of all bilateral cooperation agreements and initiatives with Syria. The measures announced are consistent with Canada’s foreign policy priority to promote freedom, democracy, human rights and the rule of law around the world. Canada stands with the Syrian people in their calls for reform and a brighter, better future for Syria.
  5. Prohibition on the importation, purchase or transportation of petroleum or petroleum products from Syria.
  6. Prohibition on new investment in the Syrian oil sector.
  7. Prohibition on the provision or acquisition of financial services for the purpose of facilitating the importation, purchase or transportation of Syrian petroleum or petroleum products.
  8. Prohibition on the provision or acquisition of financial services for the purpose of investing in the Syrian oil sector.

A news release announcing the May 24 sanctions can be found at PM announces sanctions on Syria.

For more information on the August 13 announcement, please visit Statement by Minister Baird on Situation in Syria.