US sanctions, Houthis, and India

Written by The Frontier Post

The United States Department of Treasury Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) has designated several individuals and entities including one Indian maritime Professional as financier of Houthis militia, a designated terrorist group and imposed sanctions against them. According to US Treasury, an Iranian national namely Sa’id Ahmad Muhammad al-Jamal and other individuals and entities involved in an international network to provide tens of millions of dollars funds to the Houthis in cooperation with senior officials of Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps- Qods Force (IRGC-QF). US accused Al-Jamal’s network of front companies and intermediaries to sell commodities, such as Iranian petroleum in the Middle East and beyond and channel a significant portion of the revenue to the Houthis in Yemen.

US Treasury designated al-Jamal pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, for having materially assisted, sponsored, or provided financial, material, or technological support for, or goods or services to or in support of, the IRGC-QF. It was said that 11 other individuals, entities, and vessels were also sanctioned for their relationships with al-Jamal. Furthermore, the US Treasury also designated an Indian maritime professional Manoj Sahbarwal based in UAE. Manoj manages the shipping operations for Sa’id Al-Jamal Network and advises them on smuggling of petroleum products and other commodities in the Middle East and beyond.

In fact, Iranian Intelligence, and Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force (IRGC-QF) remained the main source of funding, technical and military support to Yemeni Houthis group since its inception and involvement in insurgency.  The US Navy had seized several shipments of arms, ammunition and oil being smuggled illegally for intended use of Houthis militia during the past. According to reports, Iranian Intelligence is operating several networks mostly from third countries such as UAE, Bahrain, Syria, Lebanon, Singapore, and India.

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