Washington — Today the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated the Republic of the Sudan Central Reserve Police (CRP) for serious human rights abuse. The CRP has used excessive force against pro-democracy protesters peacefully demonstrating against the military-led overthrow of the civilian-led transitional government in Sudan.
“Since the October 25 military takeover, Sudan’s Central Reserve Police has used excessive force and violence intended to silence civilian activists and protesters,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “We condemn Sudan’s security services for killing, harassing, and intimidating Sudanese citizens. These actions are exacerbating the crisis in Sudan and are a direct contradiction to the Sudanese security services’ stated commitment to participate constructively in a facilitated process to resolve Sudan’s political crisis and return to a democratic transition.”
VIOLENCE AGAINST PROTESTERS IN KHARTOUM
The CRP is a militarized Sudanese police unit that has been at the forefront of the Sudanese security forces’ violent response to peaceful protests in Khartoum. On January 17, 2022, the CRP and the anti-riot police led a deployment of Sudanese security forces to suppress demonstrations across Khartoum. Using live ammunition, CRP officers fired on protesters throughout the day outside of the University of Khartoum’s Faculty of Medicine. One protester was shot and died later from his wounds. When protesters fled the scene, CRP, anti-riot police, and regular police chased them, arresting and beating some with batons and gun butts. By the end of the day, CRP officers fatally shot another protester near al-Jawda hospital, and injured others.
OFAC designated the CRP pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13818 for being a foreign person responsible for or complicit in, or that has directly or indirectly engaged in, serious human rights abuse.
As a result of today’s action, all property and interests in property of the CRP that are in or come within the United States, or that are in the possession or control of U.S. persons, are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of designated persons.
Building upon the Global Magnitsky Human Rights Accountability Act, E.O. 13818 was issued on December 20, 2017, in recognition that the prevalence of human rights abuse and corruption that have their source, in whole or in substantial part, outside the United States, had reached such scope and gravity as to threaten the stability of international political and economic systems. Human rights abuse and corruption undermine the values that form an essential foundation of stable, secure, and functioning societies; have devastating impacts on individuals; weaken democratic institutions; degrade the rule of law; perpetuate violent conflicts; facilitate the activities of dangerous persons; and undermine economic markets. The United States seeks to impose tangible and significant consequences on those who commit serious human rights abuse or engage in corruption, as well as to protect the financial system of the United States from abuse by these same persons.
The power and integrity of OFAC sanctions derive not only from its ability to designate and add persons to the SDN List, but also from its willingness to remove persons from the SDN List consistent with the law. The ultimate goal of sanctions is not to punish, but to bring about a positive change in behavior. For information concerning the process for seeking removal from an OFAC list, including the SDN List, please refer to OFAC’s Frequently Asked Question 897.