The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), concurrent with the UN Security Council’s Libya Sanctions Committee, has taken action targeting Salah Badi (Badi), the leader of the Sumud Brigade militia that has sparked violent clashes in the south of Libya’s capital, Tripoli.
Upon entering Tripoli in late August 2018, Badi also called for support from other militias to attack the city, plunging it into turmoil. The Sumud Brigade has waged attacks against rival militias aligned with the Government of National Accord, through which Badi has undermined the peace, security, and stability of Libya.
“Salah Badi’s prolonged militia attacks on Libya’s capital have devastated the city and disrupted the peace,” said Sigal Mandelker, Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. “Treasury is targeting rogue actors in Libya who have contributed to chaos and turmoil that undermines the internationally recognized Government of National Accord.”
Today, OFAC designated Salah Badi pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13726, “Blocking Property and Suspending Entry Into the United States of Persons Contributing to the Situation in Libya,” for being the leader of an entity that has, or whose members have, engaged in actions or policies that threaten the peace, security, or stability of Libya, including through the supply of arms or related materiel.
In September 2018, militia forces under Badi’s command battled rival militias, despite repeated calls from the UN for all sides to adhere to a ceasefire. Among those killed in the fighting were members of the ambulance and emergency services in Tripoli. Since the beginning of the clashes, Badi’s Sumud Brigade has used highly destructive Grad rockets in densely populated areas, adding to the devastation of the attacks.
Badi previously served in the former parliament in Tripoli, the General National Congress (GNC), and is renowned for having led fierce battles to keep the GNC in power beyond its mandate in 2014, during which Tripoli’s main international airport was nearly destroyed and suffered more than $2 billion in damage.
Badi’s critical role as a commander in the 2014 attacks, which the attackers dubbed Operation Libya Dawn, caused considerable material and institutional damage and led to massive population displacements. As the situation escalated into open armed conflict, the Government of Libya was unable to function properly, the newly elected parliament left the capital, the UN evacuated, and most embassies closed, further exacerbating Libya’s vulnerability in the wake of the country’s 2011 revolution.
As a result of today’s actions, any property or interest in property of Badi within or transiting U.S. jurisdiction are blocked. U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with blocked persons, including entities owned or controlled by designated persons. Additionally, the corresponding UN sanctions obligate all UN Member States to impose an asset freeze and travel ban.