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Ban on Charcoal from Somalia

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Source: Global Times

Obama bans US import of charcoal from Somalia

Xinhua | 2012-7-21 10:56:33

By Agencies

US President Barack Obama on Friday ordered an import ban on charcoal from Somalia, and expanded sanctions against those said to be imperiling security and stability in the Horn of Africa nation.

In an executive order that took effect as of 2 p.m. EDT (1800 GMT) on Friday, the president authorized a ban on direct or indirect imports of charcoal from Somalia, saying that the trade generates "significant revenue" for al-Shabaab, a Somalia-based cell of al-Qaida.

The militant group, branded as a terrorist group by the United States and several other countries, controls large swathes of the southern parts of Somalia.

Since the outbreak of a civil war in Somalia in 1991, there has been no central government control over most of the country's territory, and the internationally-recognized Transitional Federal Government controls only a small part of the country.

The transitional government, whose mandate expires on Aug. 20, is working toward eventual national elections in 2012.

Obama also ordered expanded sanctions against individuals and entities that have engaged in acts threatening the peace, security or stability of Somalia, blocking the delivery of humanitarian aid to the country, or targeting civilians. The sanctions entail freezing of all assets under US jurisdiction.

The president ordered sanctions against some Somali individuals and entities in April 2010.

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