Switzerland imposes sanctions on Syrian officials

May 18, 2011 16:20

ZURICH - Switzerland said on Wednesday it would impose travel bans on 13 Syrian officials and freeze any of their assets held in Swiss banks in response to their government's violent crackdown against pro-reform protesters.

The measures, which will take effect from May 19, match a decision by the European Union last week to impose sanctions on 13 of Assad's closest allies.Roland Vock, who heads the office for sanctions at the Swiss Secretariat for Economics (SECO), said Swiss banks will have to check whether they hold assets of any of the 13 officials and notify the government.

The Swiss measures also include an arms embargo, although Switzerland has not exported any weapons to Syria for at least the last 10 years, the SECO said.

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