U.S. sanctions 'key terrorists' in Yemen

By Allen Cone  |  Oct. 25, 2017 at 12:18 PM
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Oct. 25 (UPI) -- The U.S. Treasury Department on Wednesday announced sanctions against eight Yemeni individuals and one company to combat terrorism by the Islamic State and al-Qaida.

The sanctions were jointly issued with Saudi Arabia and member states of the recently established Terrorist Financing Targeting Center -- Qatar, Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman and the United Arab Emirates. The United States also belongs to the TFTC.

The Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control, the department's enforcement arm, said those sanctioned are "key terrorists or supporters."

Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin made the announcement during a trip to Riyadh, Saudi Arabia, Wednesday -- where he marked the opening of the TFTC.

"Through this action we are aggressively targeting radical extremists in Yemen and the surrounding region who pose a direct threat to the security of the United States, Yemen, and the international community," Mnuchin said.

The sanctions block the subjects' assets and prohibit them from traveling to the United States and any Gulf member country that contributes to the TFTC.

"For the first time, we are establishing a multinational center to focus our efforts and disrupt the financial and support networks that enable terrorists," Mnuchin said.

The group formed as a "bold and historic effort" to expand states' cooperation to counter the terror financing. U.S. President Donald Trump announced the coalition's creation in May.

Al Khayr Supermarket, which is owned or controlled by Sayf Abdulrab Salem al-Hayashi, appeared on the sanctions list. Al-Hayashi also was sanctioned as an accused weapons dealer financing al-Qaida activities in Yemen.

Also sanctioned:

Bilal Ali Muhammad al-Wafi, considered a key member of al-Qaida in Yemen. U.S. officials said he participated in the 2012 bombing of a Yemeni military parade rehearsal that killed more than 80 people.

Adil Abduh Fari Uthman al-Dhubhani, accused of commanding an al Qaeda-associated group of about 2,000 fighters in Yemen and paying various Sunni militants last year.

Radwan Muhammad Husayn Ali Qanan, accused of assassination and kidnapping operations in Yemen.

Abu Sulayman al-Adani, the accused head of the Islamic State in Yemen.

Khalid Sa'id Ghabish al-Ubaydi, accused of transporting smuggled weapons to secret locations and storage depots for the Islamic State in Yemen.

Khalid al-Marfadi, accused of attempting to assassinate Yemeni security forces, recruiting extremist fighters and preparing car bombs.

Nashwan al-Wali al-Yafi'i, an accused finance leader reporting to al-Marfadi.

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