The Council of the European Union (EU) reported that it decided to extend sanctions against the Syrian government for one year, until June 1, 2020.
“The EU has decided to maintain the restrictive measures against the Syrian regime and those who support it, taking into account the repression that it continues to exert on the population,” the Council said in a communique.
According to the European leaders, the individuals and organisations affected by the prohibition “are responsible for the violent repression that is exerted on the civilian population in Syria”, and obtain “benefits” from the regime, which they “sustain” in different ways.
Brussels has imposed an embargo on oil, to which are added the “restrictions” on certain types of investments, the freezing of assets held by the Syrian Central Bank in the EU and the restrictions that govern exports of equipment and technologies. Among them, the devices used for surveillance tasks or to intercept telephone or Internet communications.
The Council also removed five deceased individuals from the list as well as an entity that ceased to exist and a company with respect to which “the application of restrictive measures is no longer justified”.
The list of sanctioned individuals in Syria now stands at 270, as well as 70 legal entities, which are prohibited from traveling to the EU and assets are frozen.
The EU sanctions are in effect from the first of December 2011, and are reviewed annually.