US names and sanctions sponsors of Boko Haram

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Boko Haram terrorists operating in Sambisa Forest

Barely six months after the United Arab Emirates (UAE) placed six Nigerians on its terror list, the United States said it is sanctioning the backers of Boko haram for their alleged involvement in sponsoring terrorism.

The six Nigerians alleged to have been bankrolling the Boko Haram insurgents include Abdurrahman Ado Musa, Salihu Yusuf Adamu, Bashir Ali Yusuf, Muhammed Ibrahim Isa, Ibrahim Ali Alhassan, and Surajo Abubakar Muhammad.

According to a statement on Friday made available to the Vanguard by the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), the six Nigerians are “Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons, pursuant to Executive Order 13224, as amended, for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, Boko Haram”.

In the statement signed by US Under Secretary of the Treasury, Brian Nelson, “ the United States joins the UAE in targeting terrorist financing networks of mutual concern.

“Treasury continues to target financial facilitators of terrorist activity worldwide. We welcome multilateral action on this Boko Haram network to ensure that it is not able to move any further funds through the international financial system.

“As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of the individuals named above, and of any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by them, individually, or with other blocked persons, that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, must be blocked and reported to OFAC.

“Unless authorized by a general or specific license issued by OFAC or otherwise exempt, OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. persons or within the United States (including transactions transiting the United States) that involve any property or interests in property of designated or otherwise blocked persons.

“Furthermore, engaging in certain transactions with the individuals designated today entails risk of secondary sanctions pursuant to E.O. 13224, as amended. Pursuant to this authority, OFAC can prohibit or impose strict conditions on the opening or maintaining in the United States of a correspondent account or a payable-through account of a foreign financial institution that knowingly conducted or facilitated any significant transaction on behalf of a Specially Designated Global Terrorist”.

Although the extent to which the public naming and sanctioning translate to ending the Boko Haram insurgency is not clear, it is expected that this development would weaken the financial system of the terrorist network.

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