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Treasury Sanctions Jet Fuel Suppliers and Military Cronies in Burma Prior to Armed Forces Day

March 24th, 2023  •  Author:   U.S. Department of the Treasury  •  6 minute read
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WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) designated two individuals and six entities that are connected to Burma’s military and that have enabled the military regime’s continuing atrocities, including through the importation, storage, and distribution of jet fuel to Burma’s military. These actions come as the military regime prepares to mark the 78th Armed Forces Day. The two individuals and six entities are being designated pursuant to Executive Order (E.O) 14014.

Following the February 1, 2021, military coup that overthrew Burma’s democratically elected civilian government, the military regime has continued to commit atrocities and violence against the people of Burma, with an increasing reliance on air strikes with unguided munitions and rockets in civilian populated areas. These attacks include air strikes in late 2022 on the village of Let Yet Kone in central Burma that impacted a school with children and teachers present, as well as an air strike in the northern state of Kachin that killed as many as 80 people who were attending a musical concert.

Today, OFAC also published a Burma Jet Fuel Sanctions Alert, to inform individuals, businesses, and other persons of the sanctions risks associated with providing jet fuel to Burma’s military regime.

“Burma’s military regime continues to inflict pain and suffering on its own people,” said Under Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Brian E. Nelson. “The United States remains steadfast in its commitment to the people of Burma, and will continue to deny the military the materiel it uses to commit these atrocities.”

BURMESE MILITARY AVIATION FUEL SUPPLIERS

Today’s action targets three entities for operating in the defense sector of the Burmese economy, specifically based on their involvement in the importation, storage, and distribution of jet fuel to Burma’s military. In November 2022, many civil society organizations reported that without jet fuel, Burma’s military would have no means to power the aircraft used in air strikes. These actions further align our measures with partners and allies.

ASIA SUN GROUP is a Burma-based company and a key operator in the jet fuel supply chain supporting brutal military regime and the atrocities that have been committed in Burma. It is also sanctioned by Canada and the European Union.

ASIA SUN TRADING CO. LTD. is a Burma-based company that has purchased jet fuel on behalf of Burma’s air force and imported it through the Thilawa Port. It was designated by the United Kingdom earlier this year.

CARGO LINK PETROLEUM LOGISITICS CO. LTD. is a Burma-based company that is the transport contractor that has used tanker trucks to distribute jet fuel to military bases across Burma. It was designated by the United Kingdom earlier this year.

Asia Sun Group, Asia Sun Trading Co. Ltd., and Cargo Link Petroleum Logistics Co. Ltd. are being designated pursuant to E.O. 14014 for operating in the defense sector of the Burmese economy.

BURMESE DEFENSE RELATED CRONIES

Today’s action also targets individuals and entities that are associated with or have provided equipment to Burma’s military.

TUN MIN LATT is a Burmese national and close associate of U.S.-designated military regime leader Min Aung Hlaing and is the son of a former military official. Tun has utilized his companies, including the Burma-based STAR SAPPHIRE GROUP OF COMPANIES and Burma-based STAR SAPPHIRE TRADING COMPANY LIMITED, to import military arms and equipment, including drones and aircraft parts, while acting as Burma’s agent with the U.S.-sanctioned People’s Republic of China arms manufacturer NORINCO. Additionally, Tun was arrested in Thailand in September 2022 on charges of narcotics trafficking and money laundering. When he was arrested, Thai police found numerous documents that belonged to Min’s U.S.-designated children, including his son, Aung Pyae Sone, and daughter, Khin Thiri Thet Mon.

Tun Min Latt is being designated pursuant to E.O. 14014 for operating in the defense sector of the Burmese economy.

WIN MIN SOE is the wife of Tun Min Latt and is a co-owner with him of both Star Sapphire Trading Company Limited and the Singapore-based STAR SAPPHIRE GROUP PTE. LTD.

Win Min Soe is being designated pursuant to E.O. 14014 for being a spouse or adult child of Tun Min Latt, a person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to E.O. 14014.

Star Sapphire Group of Companies, Star Sapphire Trading Company Limited, and Star Sapphire Group Pte. Ltd. are being designated pursuant to E.O. 14014 for being owned or controlled by, or for having acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly, Tun Min Latt, a person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to E.O. 14014. Star Sapphire Group Pte. Ltd. is also being designated pursuant to E.O. 14014 for being owned or controlled by, or for having acted or purported to act for or on behalf of, directly or indirectly Win Min Soe, a person whose property and interests in property are blocked pursuant to E.O. 14014.

SANCTIONS IMPLICATIONS

As a result of today’s action, pursuant to E.O. 14014, all property and interests in property of the persons named above that are in the United States, or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, are blocked and must be reported to OFAC. In addition, any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50 percent or more by one or more blocked persons are also blocked.

Unless authorized by a general or specific license issued by OFAC, or otherwise exempt, OFAC’s regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. persons or within (or transiting) the United States that involve any property or interests in property of designated or otherwise blocked persons. The prohibitions include the making of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services by, to, or for the benefit of any blocked person or the receipt of any contribution or provision of funds, goods, or services from any such person.

U.S. sanctions need not be permanent. Sanctions are intended to bring about a positive change of behavior. Consistent with the findings of Treasury’s Sanctions Review, the removal of sanctions is available for persons designated under E.O. 14014, who take concrete and meaningful actions to restore the path to democracy and disassociate themselves from the military-led government in Burma. For information concerning the process for seeking removal from any OFAC list, including the Specially Designated Nationals and Blocked Persons List (SDN List), please refer to OFAC’s Frequently Asked Question 897Additional information regarding sanctions programs administered by OFAC.

For information regarding the individuals and entities designated today, click here.


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Sanctions Risks Associated with Provision of Jet Fuel to the Burmese Military