US lists Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade as terrorist organization

June 9, 2016 18:58

WASHINGTON -- The United States listed the Yarmouk Martyrs Brigade as a terrorist entity on Thursday, an official designation that allows the government to impose sanctions.

The YMB has launched attacks along Israel's border ever since its founding in 2012, and has "distinguished itself from other groups in Syria through kidnapping operations targeting UN personnel," the State Department said. The group was founded by Abu Obaideh Qahtan, a Palestinian Syrian who emerged from the Palestinian Yarmouk refugee camp.

The group has made public its affiliations with Islamic State.

"The imposition of sanctions by the United States against terrorists is a powerful tool," the State Department said in its statement. "Today’s action notifies the US public and the international community that YMB is actively engaged in terrorism. Designations of terrorist individuals and groups expose and isolate organizations and individuals, and result in denial of access to the US financial system."

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