Madrid, August 10 (European Press) –
The governments of the United States, United Kingdom and Canada on Thursday blacklisted former Lebanese central bank governor Riad Salameh and four of his aides for their alleged involvement in corruption activities, less than two weeks after Salameh left the charge. Interspersed with all kinds of scandals.
Salameh, who is accused in Lebanon of alleged economic crimes and is under investigation in several European countries, is suspected of embezzling hundreds of millions of euros from public funds to acquire several properties abroad. His wealth has been under investigation in Lebanon since last year, after the Swiss attorney general’s office sought help in another lawsuit against him for alleged embezzlement of more than $300 million.
Instead, Salameh claims that he is the victim of an alleged media conspiracy to discredit him, because his fortune would have been accumulated in his earlier stage in the Merrill Lynch investment fund.
The US State Department accused the former governor and the four other sanctioned individuals of “enriching themselves at the expense of the Lebanese” at a time when the country was “sinking deeper and deeper into financial chaos”. Washington made it clear that the measures, on Thursday, are not directed against the Banque du Liban, but rather against five people specifically.
The sanctions refer to blocking the assets that these people can own under the sovereignty of the three Western countries, while restricting their room for maneuver to conclude international agreements.