Switzerland tightens sanctions against Kadhafi regime

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Switzerland said Friday it was tightening sanctions against Moamer Kadhafi's regime by adding a ban on all financial transactions to the Libyan strongman and his entourage.

"Switzerland wants to prevent any financial support for Moamer Kadhafi and those around him," said the government in a statement.

"Consequently, Switzerland supplemented its ordinance on measures against certain individuals from Libya of 21 February 2011 with an additional ban.

"According to this ban, it is prohibited to transfer funds or to otherwise make funds directly or indirectly available to the natural persons named in the annex to the ordinance," it said.

The ban ordered in February imposed a freeze on any assets belonging to Kadhafi and his entourage.

The Swiss central bank told AFP then that total Swiss banking relations with Libya amounted to 613 million Swiss francs, with an additional 205 million francs in paper or fiduciary operations.

That compared with 5.7 billion and 812 million francs respectively in 2007, before a diplomatic spat between Bern and Tripoli over the brief arrest of Kadhafi's son Hannibal in Geneva.

© 2011 AFP

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