New U.S. sanctions against Hamas target Iran funding

November 14, 2023

The U.S. on Tuesday announced a new round of sanctions against Hamas officials and Palestinian Islamic Jihad members who transfer money for Hamas from Iran to Gaza.

A Lebanese money exchange service that facilitates the transfers was also targeted for sanctions.

The sanctions—the third round against Hamas-related entities since the terrorist organization’s massive October 7 surprise attack on Israel—were imposed by the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) in coordination with the United Kingdom. 

“The United States will continue to work with our partners, including the U.K., to deny Hamas the ability to raise and use funds to carry out its atrocities,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in a statement. “Hamas’s actions have caused immense suffering and shown that terrorism does not occur in isolation. Together with our partners we are decisively moving to degrade Hamas’s financial infrastructure, cut them off from outside funding, and block the new funding channels they seek to finance their heinous acts.”

According to the Treasury, Tuesday’s sanctions build on those imposed on October 27 and October 18, as well as sanctions levied on May 2022 against officials and companies involved in managing Hamas’ “secret international and investment portfolio.” 

Among those targeted by Tuesday’s sanctions is Nasser Abu Sharif, the Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) representative to Iran, which is that militant organization’s chief financier. 

Iran’s Revolutionary Guard has trained PIJ fighters “to build and develop missiles in Gaza,” according to the Treasury. 

The sanctions aim to block access to U.S. property and bank accounts, and to prevent the targeted people and companies from doing business with Americans.

The U.S. State Department has also designated Akram al-Ajouri, the PIJ’s Deputy Secretary General, as “a Specially Designated Global Terrorist.”

PHOTO: Hamas strike on Israel October 7, per IDF

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