Treasury freezes assets of 7 people

Treasury freezes assets of 7 people
WASHINGTON - The Bush administration on Thursday took steps to clamp down financially on seven people, most of them in Syria, suspected of having ties to the Iraqi insurgency or the former regime of Saddam Hussein.

The Treasury Department's action means any assets found in the United States belonging to the designated individuals must be frozen. Americans also are forbidden from doing business with them.

Fawzi Mutlaq al-Rawi was added to the United States' asset-blocking list under an executive order that allows the government to go after people suspected of helping to bankroll terrorist acts or providing other support for them.

"The United States is acting today against former regime elements and others supporting the Iraqi insurgency out of Syria," said Stuart Levey, Treasury's under secretary for terrorism and financial intelligence. "Syria must take action to deny safe haven to those supporting violence from within its borders," he added.

The department accused al-Rawi of facilitating the provision of $300,000 to members of al-Qaida in Iraq in November 2005. He provided members of the group with "improvised explosive devices, rifles and suicide bombers," the department alleged. He also attended meetings where there were discussions of, among other things, "conducting airborne improvised explosive device attacks against the U.S. embassy and concentrating attacks against the international zone," the department alleged.

The other six individuals named Thursday were designated under a different executive order that targets senior officials of Iraq's former regime or their immediate family members. They are: Hasan Hashim Khalaf al-Dulaymi; Ahmed Watban Ibrahim Hasan al-Tikriti; Ahmad Muhammad Yunis al-Ahmad; Sa'ad Muhammad Yunis al-Ahmad; Thabet al-Duri; and Hatem Hamdan al-Azawi.

Treasury freezes assets of 7 people

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