US sanctions to target Syrian oil

Mar 18, 2004 01:00 AM

The Bush administration is expected to prohibit American energy companies from future investments in Syria, but allow some already existing projects to continue, as part of fresh US sanctions to be unveiled soon, sources in Washington said.
„They are not going to shut down oil contracts but are going to stop all the licenses,“ one source familiar with the interagency discussions said.
If implemented as such, the tough sanction would be a victory for the more hawkish factions in the administration, which had been urging tough punishment for Syria's continued support for terrorist groups, weak patrolling of its border with Iraq, and unwillingness to transfer Iraqi assets in Syrian banks to US authorities.
US oil investments in Syria have been estimated at $ 600 mm.

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