WASHINGTON, May 8 (Reuters) - The United States on Thursday for the first time slapped sanctions on a Russian bank for its dealings with the Syrian government, which has been engaged in bloody three-year civil war with opposition forces.
The U.S. Treasury put Tempbank, a Moscow-based bank, on its list of sanctioned entities, which effectively cuts the bank off from the U.S. financial system. The Treasury also put sanctions on an official in the bank, Mikhail Gagloev, six Syrian government officials and two Syrian refinery companies, Banias and Homs.
Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad has been using Russian banks to access world markets, but the United States had in the past resisted imposing sanctions on the banks, despite pressure to do so from U.S. lawmakers. (Reporting by Anna Yukhananov; Editing by Chris Reese)