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United States Imposes Sanctions on Supporters Funding Sudan Conflict

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WASHINGTON – The United States on Wednesday imposed sanctions on three companies linked to the fighting parties in Sudan, the latest in a series of measures against Sudanese entities aimed at stemming a devastating nine-month conflict.

The businesses sanctioned are Alkhaleej Bank and Al-Fakher Advanced Works, controlled by the paramilitary Rapid Support Forces, and Zadna International, controlled by the Sudanese army, according to a U.S. Treasury Department statement.

War broke out last April between the two forces, resulting in the devastation of wide swaths of the country, the killing of thousands of civilians, warnings of famine and the world’s largest internal displacement crisis.

The Rapid Support Forces are accused by the U.S. of participating in an ethnic cleansing campaign in West Darfur, along with war crimes and crimes against humanity. The army, which has carried out a widespread airstrike campaign, is also accused of war crimes by the U.S.

“The conflict in Sudan continues, in part, due to key individuals and entities that help fund the continuation of the violence,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. Alkhaleej Bank is “an essential part of the RSF’s efforts to finance its operations” that received $50 million from the Sudanese Central Bank just before the war broke out, the Treasury Department said.

Holding company Alfakher was used to manage the RSF’s lucrative gold exports, its main source of financing to buy weapons. Meanwhile, Zadna International was described as a “top revenue-earner” for the Sudanese army. The U.S. Treasury Department said it continued to provide funding and was used for money-laundering.

The sanctions were imposed under a U.S. executive order authorizing sanctions on individuals who are destabilizing Sudan and undermining the country’s democratic transition, the Treasury Department said.

Since the war began, the U.S. has sanctioned the deputy head of the RSF, other major businesses owned by both sides, and other entities.

Additional source: Voice of Africa