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U.S. sanctions four alleged Hezbollah operatives in Africa

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WASHINGTON (JTA) — The United States sanctioned four Lebanese men in West Africa because of their Hezbollah ties.

In a statement issued Tuesday, the Treasury Department suggested that the U.S. was broadening its efforts to isolate the Lebanon-based terrorist group and its sponsor, Iran.

U.S. citizens are “prohibited from engaging in any transactions with the individuals,” according to the statement, and assets of the four “subject to U.S. jurisdiction are frozen.”

“As Hezbollah continues to use its global network of operatives and supporters to extend its malign influence beyond the borders of Lebanon, we will continue to use all tools at our disposal take action to disrupt these efforts,” David Cohen, the undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence at the Treasury Department, said in the statement.

“These actions are increasingly important as the funding from Hezbollah’s traditional patron, Iran, is squeezed by international sanctions,” he said.

The statement said the four men — in Sierra Leone, Senegal, the Ivory Coast and The Gambia — “organized fundraising efforts, recruited members, and in some cases styled themselves as ambassadors of Hezbollah’s Foreign Relations Department.”

 

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