The European Union said Thursday it was renewing economic sanctions against Syria, including an oil embargo and asset freezes against allies of President Bashar al-Assad, for another year.
The measures, which will extend to June 1, 2015, affect 179 people "associated with the violent repression in Syria", and 53 entities, including the Central Bank of Syria, the EU said in its Official Journal.
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Two people and one entity have been removed from the initial list of those subjected to sanctions, which were first unveiled in May 2013.
The renewal of EU sanctions comes just days before a presidential election sure to give Assad another term in office, with no political solution in sight for the three-year war that has devastated the country.
The civil war raging since March 2011 has killed more than 160,000 people and forced nearly half the population to flee their homes.