On 21 January 2019, the EU Council published a new list of sanctions against Syria. These sanction target businessmen or Syrian businesses that are participating in the Marota City project.
The European Union recognises that, apart from rare exceptions, none of the persons sanctioned under the new list have participated in any way in the Syrian conflict. They are being imposed for their intention to participate in the reconstruction of the country.
According to the UN, the Syrian reconstruction process would require a minimum of 300 million dollars. In addition to rehabilitating certain areas, creating new cities will be indispensable, given that important city centres had been completely destroyed. It is in this perspective that Marota City is the most important project being undertaken.
In addition to sanctions that were already in place, the new EU decision, raises the number of persons under sanction to 270 and the number of firms to 72.
In October 2017, the then number 2 in the UN’s hierarchy, the US Jeffrey Feltman, imparted directly to all members of the UN family – without going through the Security Council, the following instructions:
• deny all urgent help to the Syrian population;
• oppose any type of assistance to Syria; and
• oppose all form of reconstruction in this country .