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On February 9, 2023, the US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (“OFAC”) issued Syria General License 23, “Authorizing Transactions Related to Earthquake Relief Efforts in Syria.”  General License 23 authorizes transactions related to earthquake relief efforts in Syria that would otherwise be prohibited by the Syrian Sanctions Regulations (“SySR”) through 12:01 p.m. eastern daylight time, August 8, 2023. 

General License 23 does not authorize importation of petroleum or petroleum products of Syrian origin into the US or any transactions involving any person blocked pursuant to the SySR, other than persons who meet the definition of the term Government of Syria, as defined in section 542.305(a) of the SySR.  General License 23 does not overcome any licensing requirements of the Bureau of Industry and Security (“BIS”), which apply to items subject to the Export Administration Regulations (“EAR”) other than EAR99 food and medicine. 

The author recognizes the assistance of Ryan Orange with the preparation of this blog post.


Kerry Contini is a partner in the Firm's international trade practice in Washington, DC. She advises companies on export controls, sanctions, and related human rights and supply chain compliance issues. She has been with Baker McKenzie since she was a summer associate in 2005 and started as an associate in 2006. Kerry has been ranked in the Up and Coming categories for Export Controls & Trade Sanctions by Chambers Global (2022) and Chambers USA (2021), with clients highlighting that "her advice and solutions are business-focused" and that she is "very practical and easy to work with." Kerry has been recognized as a “standout” member of Baker McKenzie’s international trade team by Legal 500. Legal 500 reported a client as stating that, “Kerry is thoughtful, practical, efficient, and has really invested in getting to know our business and our team.” Kerry was recognized in the Who's Who Legal 2021 as a Global Leader in Trade & Customs - International Sanctions. Kerry has written on export controls and trade sanctions issues for a number of publications, including WorldECR, The Export Practitioner, and Ethisphere. She has presented on pandemic-related supply chain issues to the US International Trade Commission. Kerry has been quoted in a number of publications, including Global Investigations Review and Asian Legal Business. She is an editor of the Firm’s Global Supply Chain Compliance blog and is a regular contributor to that blog as well as the Firm’s Sanctions & Export Controls Update blog. Kerry is a co-chair of the Export Controls and Sanctions Section of the Association of Women in International Trade. Kerry is part of the diversity and inclusion leadership for the Washington DC office and is a member of the BakerWomen Steering Committee. She has maintained an active pro bono practice throughout her career at Baker McKenzie and is co-chair of the Washington DC office pro bono leadership team. Kerry has worked on a wide range of pro bono matters, primarily focusing on public international law, animal advocacy, and election protection. She is an active member of the Animal Law Committee of the Environment, Energy, and Natural Resources Community of the DC Bar.

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