#Sanctions

No sweet victory for Assad as economy collapses and U.S. sanctions hit

Just last year, Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad seemed on the brink of crowning military victories by easing his diplomatic isolation and recovering more of Syria without a bullet being fired.

Not only had the U.S.-allied Kurdish PKK invited Assad’s forces back to the northeast, but businessmen from the once hostile United Arab Emirates visited Damascus to scout out investment opportunities and regional trade had started to pick up.

US doesn't want to oust Assad: envoy

The US is no longer demanding that Syrian regime leader Bashar al-Assad step down from office, and is instead seeking a radical change in the regime's behavior, President Donald Trump's special envoy for the country's conflict said Monday.

"We are not demanding total victory. We are not saying that Assad has to go," Ambassador James Jeffrey said during a virtual conference hosted by the Washington, D.C.-based Middle East Institute think tank.

Iran’s Currency Continues to Nosedive

Jun 20, 2020

Iran’s currency continues to plummet against the U.S. dollar as the regime continues to grapple with the economic implications of U.S. sanctions and the coronavirus.

The rial fell to as low as 188,000 against the dollar in the free market on Saturday, according to foreign exchange shops and websites.

The currency traded at around 150,000 when the country recorded its first case of Covid-19 in February. The rial has nosedived by more than 500% in value from 2015 when the Islamic Republic accepted curbs on its nuclear program in exchange for some sanctions relief.

The Caesar Act and a Pathway Out of Conflict in Syria

By Steven Heydemann, Brookings Institution

On June 17, the most wide-ranging U.S. sanctions ever applied against Syria went into effect. The Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act, passed into law as part of the most recent National Defense Authorization Act, dramatically expands the authority of the U.S. government to sanction businesses, individuals, and government institutions for economic activities that support the Assad regime’s ability to wage war.

The Caesar Act and a Pathway Out of Conflict in Syria

By Steven Heydemann, Brookings Institution

On June 17, the most wide-ranging U.S. sanctions ever applied against Syria went into effect. The Caesar Syria Civilian Protection Act, passed into law as part of the most recent National Defense Authorization Act, dramatically expands the authority of the U.S. government to sanction businesses, individuals, and government institutions for economic activities that support the Assad regime’s ability to wage war.