The U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) sanctioned, on December 18th, two Central African Republic (CAR) militia commanders, Haroun Gaye and Eugene Ngaikosset, pursuant to Executive Order (E.O.) 13667 for engaging in actions that threaten the peace, security, or stability of the CAR. The U.S. Treasury Department action “targets two individuals who threaten the stability of the Central African Republic’s Transitional Government and undermine free and fair elections,” said Acting OFAC Director John E. Smith. “Treasury will continue to work with our international partners to pave a path toward peace and justice for the people of the Central African Republic.” Haroun Gaye is being sanctioned for being a leader of a militia group that threatens the peace, security, or stability of the CAR.
This action complements the listing of these individuals by the United Nations (UN) under UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2196. As a result of this action, all assets of these individuals that are under the jurisdiction of the United States or in the control of U.S. persons are frozen, and U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with them.
In September 2015, Gaye and Ngaikosset conspired as part of a larger alliance of convenience between ex-Seleka commanders and anti-Balaka allies of previously sanctioned former CAR President Francois Bozize to orchestrate violence in Bangui. Gaye and Ngaikosset aimed to overthrow the CAR Transitional Government and create a cycle of retaliatory attacks intended to threaten upcoming elections. On October 1, 2015 Gaye and Ngaikosset personally met to plan an October 3, 2015 attack in Bangui.
OFAC designated Eugene Ngaikosset for engaging in actions or policies that threaten the peace, security, or stability of the CAR. Ngaikosset is an anti-Balaka commander in Bangui and is one of the main perpetrators of the violence in Bangui that erupted in late September and October 2015. As part of that effort, Ngaikosset and others planned to take over the Presidential Palace. Ngaikosset was previously implicated in the assassinations of more than 100 alleged members of the Seleka in 2013.