The Joint Baltic American National Committee, Inc. (JBANC) has joined with 23 organizations in a letter calling on the Departments of State and Treasury to utilize the Global Magnitsky sanctions program to address corruption by authoritarian governments during the current pandemic. The letter recommends specific steps to assist in following best practices for clarity in public messaging, robust enforcement, and the provision of technical guidance to financial institutions.
Specific recommendations include the following:
● Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) should issue a notice and add language to its Frequently
Asked Questions page specifying that corruption related to the COVID-19 response is a priority area under the
Global Magnitsky program.
● The State Department should reinforce this message by using tools, such as an ALDAC cable, focused on
corruption and COVID-19 funds. The State Department should also ensure that the Bureaus of International
Narcotics and Law Enforcement (INL) and Democracy, Human Rights, and Labor (DRL) play a strong role in
working with posts to implement anti-corruption assistance programs and to identify possible actors who may be
eligible for sanctions.
● The Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN) should highlight that corruption in the distribution of
COVID-19 resources falls under the Global Magnitsky sanctions program. It should also ensure that financial
institutions are aware of and implementing the COVID-related guidance issued by the Financial Action Task Force
Read the full letter here.