US Blacklists Libya’s Kaniyat Armed Group

FILE PHOTO: A sign marks the US Treasury Department in Washington, US, August 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: A sign marks the US Treasury Department in Washington, US, August 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder/File Photo
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US Blacklists Libya’s Kaniyat Armed Group

FILE PHOTO: A sign marks the US Treasury Department in Washington, US, August 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder/File Photo
FILE PHOTO: A sign marks the US Treasury Department in Washington, US, August 6, 2018. REUTERS/Brian Snyder/File Photo

The US has imposed sanctions on Libya’s Kaniyat group, alleging it was responsible for murdering hundreds of civilians in Tarhouna.

The Treasury Department took this step against the armed group and its leader after Russia last week prevented a UN Security Council committee from imposing sanctions over human rights abuses by the group.

The United States and Germany earlier this month proposed that the Council's 15-member Libya sanctions committee impose an asset freeze and travel ban on Kaniyat.

However, such a move has to be agreed by consensus and Russia said on Friday it could not approve the sanctions because it wanted to see more evidence first that the group’s members had killed civilians.

The US sanctions were imposed Wednesday under the Global Magnitsky Act, which allows the US government to target human rights violators worldwide by freezing assets and prohibiting Americans from doing business with them.

"Mohamed al-Kani and the Kaniyat militia have tortured and killed civilians during a cruel campaign of oppression in Libya," US Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin said in a statement.

“The United States stands with the Libyan people and will use the tools and authorities at its disposal to target human rights abusers in Libya and across the world,” he added.

“The Kaniyat militia is also responsible for hundreds of summary executions at Tarhouna prison, numerous forced disappearances, and the displacement of entire families from Tarhouna,” said the Treasury.



Israeli Tanks at Edge of Rafah's Mawasi Refuge Zone

A man walks across  fallen tents the day after a strike on the al-Mawasi area, northwest of the Palestinian city of Rafah on June 22, 2024.  (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
A man walks across fallen tents the day after a strike on the al-Mawasi area, northwest of the Palestinian city of Rafah on June 22, 2024. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
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Israeli Tanks at Edge of Rafah's Mawasi Refuge Zone

A man walks across  fallen tents the day after a strike on the al-Mawasi area, northwest of the Palestinian city of Rafah on June 22, 2024.  (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)
A man walks across fallen tents the day after a strike on the al-Mawasi area, northwest of the Palestinian city of Rafah on June 22, 2024. (Photo by Bashar TALEB / AFP)

Israeli tanks advanced to the edge of the Mawasi displaced persons' camp in the northwest of the southern Gaza city of Rafah on Sunday in fierce fighting with Hamas-led fighters, residents said.
Images of two Israeli tanks stationed on a hilltop overlooking the coastal area went viral on social media, but Reuters could not independently verify them.

"The fighting with the resistance has been intense. The occupation forces are overlooking the Mawasi area now, which forced families there to head for Khan Younis," said one resident, who asked not to be named, on a chat app.

More than eight months into Israel's war in the Hamas-administered Palestinian enclave, its advance is focused on the two areas its forces have yet to seize: Rafah on Gaza's southern tip and the area surrounding Deir al-Balah in the center.

Residents said Israeli tanks had pushed deeper into western and northern Rafah in recent days, blowing up dozens of houses.

The Israeli military said it was continuing "intelligence-based, targeted operations" in the Rafah area and had located weapons stores and tunnel shafts, and killed Palestinian gunmen.

The armed wings of Hamas and the Islamic Jihad movement said their fighters had attacked Israeli forces in Rafah with anti-tank rockets and mortar bombs and pre-planted explosive devices.

Elsewhere, an Israeli airstrike killed eight Palestinians in Sabra, a suburb of Gaza City in the north, and another strike killed two people in Nuseirat in central Gaza.

The military said it had struck dozens of targets throughout the Strip.

On Saturday, Palestinian health officials said at least 40 Palestinians had been killed in separate Israeli strikes in some northern Gaza districts, where the Israeli army said it had attacked Hamas's military infrastructure. Hamas said the targets were the civilian population.

In Beit Lahiya in the northern Gaza Strip, health officials at Kamal Adwan Hospital said a baby had died of malnutrition, taking the number of children dead of malnutrition or dehydration since Oct. 7 to at least 30, a number that health officials say reflects under-recording.