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US, Gulf Countries Impose Joint Sanctions to Curb Terrorism in Yemen

U.S. Secretary of the Treasury Steven Mnuchin speaks at a conference in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Oct. 25, 2017. Along with six Gulf States, the U.S. Treasury Department on Wednesday imposed sanctions on several individuals and entities accused of supporting the Islamic State and al-Qaida in Yemen.

The United States and the six Gulf states on Wednesday imposed sanctions on several individuals and entities accused of supporting the Islamic State and al-Qaida in Yemen.

The U.S. Treasury Department said the action was the first coordinated effort under the Terrorist Financing Targeting Center (TFTC), which is co-chaired by the United States and Saudi Arabia to combat the financing and operations of terrorist organizations in the region.

Identify, track, share

TFTC was established in May during U.S. President Donald Trump's visit to Saudi Arabia. Members of the center include Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.

The group’s three stated objectives are to: identify, track and share information regarding terrorist financial networks; coordinate joint disruptive actions, and provide support to countries in the region to build the required capacity to tackle terror financing networks.

“This bold and innovative multilateral approach is needed because terrorism poses a threat to all of our nations. It is critical that we come together to combat this," U.S. Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a speech in the Saudi capital of Riyadh on Wednesday.

Three more stops for Mnuchin

Mnuchin is also expected to visit the United Arab Emirates, Qatar and Israel during a four-leg tour of the Middle East, where he is expected to push an increase in crack downs on terrorist financing networks.

“Our enemies have felt the effects of being blocked from the world financial system. They are finding it harder to raise, move and distribute money. This will continue as a result of our efforts to evolve our counterterror tools,” he said.

The new sanctions announced by the U.S. Treasury targets eight individuals identified as Adil Abduh Fari Uthman al-Dhubhani, Radwan Muhammad Husayn Ali Qanan, Khalid al-Marfadi, Sayf Abdulrab Salem al-Hayashi, Abu Sulayman al-Adani, Nashwan al-Wali al-Yafi'I, Khalid Sa'id Ghabish al-Ubaydi, and Bilal Ali Muhammad al-Wafi.

The named individuals are cited as “leaders, financiers and facilitators” of IS in Yemen and al-Qaida in the Arabian Peninsula.

More sanctions

The department also sanctioned Al Khayr Supermarket for being owned or controlled by al-Hayashi.

“All property and interests in property of these persons subject to U.S. jurisdiction are blocked, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them,” a statement from the U.S. Treasury Department said.

In addition to the eight individuals and the business, the Gulf States also sanctioned Nayif Salih Salim al-Qaysi, Abd al-Wahhab Muhammad Abd al-Rahman al-Humayqani, Hashim Muhsin Aydarus al-Hamid, and Rahmah Charitable Organization, all of whom were previously designated by the U.S. for supporting terrorism.