EU hits more Syrian military, Assad officials with sanctions
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Smoke rises from al-Bab city behind vehicles after shelling, northern Aleppo province, Syria October 26, 2016. REUTERS/Khalil Ashawi
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BRUSSELS (Reuters) - EU governments put 10 more people under sanctions over the crisis in Syria, targeting high-ranking military officials and senior figures linked to President Bashar al-Assad, the bloc said in a statement on Thursday.
France and Britain pushed hard for the asset freezes and travel bans as a way to respond to the bombing of hundreds of civilians, including children, in the besieged Syrian city of Aleppo, where Western-backed rebels are holding out against Syrian and Russian air strikes.
However, Paris and London have been unable to persuade their EU counterparts to impose similar measures on Russian military officials over the humanitarian crisis in Aleppo after Rome resisted, worried about upsetting business ties with Moscow.
The European Union will publish the names of the 10 people sanctioned on Friday. On Thursday it said only that they were "high-ranking military officials and senior figures linked to the regime".
As well an oil embargo and a ban on any dealings with the Syrian central bank, the decision takes the number of people on the EU's Syrian list, which also includes Iranians, to 217. Sixty-nine companies are also under sanctions.
(Reporting by Robin Emmott; editing by Philip Blenkinsop)
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