“Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) is designating the Wagner Group as a significant transnational criminal organization,” reads the press release of the U.S. Department of State.
As noted, the Wagner Group’s pattern of serious criminal behavior includes violent harassment of journalists, aid workers, and members of minority groups and harassment, obstruction, and intimidation of UN peacekeepers in the Central African Republic (CAR), as well as rape and killings in Mali.
Concurrently, OFAC is designating Wagner pursuant to E.O. 13667 for being responsible for or complicit in, or having engaged in, the targeting of women, children, or any civilians through the commission of acts of violence, or abduction, forced displacement, or attacks on schools, hospitals, religious sites, or locations where civilians are seeking refuge, or through conduct that would constitute a serious abuse or violation of human rights or a violation of international humanitarian law in relation to CAR.
As reported, on Thursday the U.S. government announced new sanctions against Russia, in particular against the Wagner Group and its leader Yevgeniy Prigozhin due to their involvement in waging a brutal war in Ukraine, as well as destabilization and criminal activities in the countries of the African continent.