WASHINGTON: The U.S. on Thursday imposed sanctions on an individual and three currency exchange companies for their alleged involvement in facilitating the flow of Iranian financial assistance to the Yemeni Houthis.
The U.S. Treasury Department said in a statement said the two exchange houses are based in Yemen and one is in Turkey.
Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian Nelson said in the statement said that the recent measures show resolve of Biden administration to restrict the illicit flow of funds to the Houthis, who continue to carryout dangerous attacks on international shipping and risk further destabilizing the region.
The sanctions freeze any U.S. assets of the exchange companies and generally bars Americans from doing business with them.
The Houthis since November 19 have attacked dozen ships in the Red Sea and Gulf of Aden. They say that the attacks were in response to Israeli bombardment on Gaza Strip.
21,320 Palestinians killed Gaza
According to Gaza health ministry at least 21,320 Palestinians, mostly women and children, have been killed in relentless Israeli bombardments since October 7. Meanwhile 53,688 Palestinians injured since the outbreak of hostilities.
U.S., British and French warships have also shot down drones and missiles launched by the Houthis.
The U.S. is heading a new naval task force to protect commercial shipping and has blamed Iran for supplying weapons, financing, targeting and other assistance to the Houthis. However, Iran strongly denies these accusations.
The UN has said that some 1.87 million Palestinians, over 80 percent of Gaza’s population, have left their homes because of the Israeli bombardment of the besieged enclave.