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US slaps sanctions on Myanmar's state gem company

ANI | Updated: Apr 08, 2021 23:51 IST

Washington DC [US], April 8 (ANI): The United States on Thursday imposed sanctions on Myanmar's state gem company in a bid to cut the "economic resource" of the country's military rulers.
"Today, the US Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated Myanma Gems Enterprise (MGE), a Burmese state-owned entity that is responsible for all gemstone activities in Burma," the US Department of Treasury said in a statement on Thursday.
Myanma Gems Enterprise operates under Myanmar's Ministry of Natural Resources and Environmental Conservation.

MGE is responsible for all functions relating to gemstones, including "permitting, licensing, enforcing the regulatory framework, participating in joint ventures on behalf of the state, collecting royalties, and marketing of jade and gemstones in Burma," the statement said.
"Today's action highlights Treasury's commitment to denying the Burmese military sources of funding, including from key state-owned enterprises throughout Burma," OFAC Director Andrea Gacki said.
As a result of today's action, all property and interests in the property of the entity that are in the United States or in the possession or control of US persons have been blocked and must be reported to OFAC.
"These sanctions are not directed at the people of Burma," the department said.
Myanmar's military overthrew the civilian government on February 1 and declared a year-long state of emergency. The coup triggered mass protests that have been met by the violence, resulting in hundreds of people having been killed. (ANI)