US adds 9 Libyan firms to sanctions list

June 21, 2011 - 12:59 PM

WASHINGTON (AP) — The U.S. has toughened sanctions on Libya by adding three government-owned banks to a list of companies banned from conducting business in the United States.

The U.S. on Tuesday also rewarded Moammar Gadhafi's former oil minister Shukri Ghanem for defecting. Ghanem is now no longer on a blacklist preventing him from holding assets in the United States or doing business with Americans.

A Treasury Department statement identified the three targeted banks as subsidiaries of the Libyan Arab Foreign Bank. They are the Arab Turkish Bank, the Tunisia-based North Africa International Bank and the Lebanon-based North Africa Commercial Bank.

Six other government-owned companies were subjected to sanctions. They included chemicals, shipping and fertilizer firms. Two companies are co-owned by Ghana's government and another is co-owned by Pakistan's government.