Switzerland has frozen another 20 million francs ($20.7 million) in assets belonging to members of President Bashar al-Assad's regime, a government spokesman said.

"/> Switzerland has frozen another 20 million francs ($20.7 million) in assets belonging to members of President Bashar al-Assad's regime, a government spokesman said.

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SYRIA

Swiss freeze millions more in Syrian assets

Switzerland has frozen another 20 million francs ($20.7 million) in assets belonging to members of President Bashar al-Assad's regime, a government spokesman said.

“In Switzerland, 20 million francs belonging to the entourage of the Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad have been blocked in recent weeks,” Marie Avet, spokeswoman for the Swiss economics ministry, told newspaper NZZ am Sonntag.

This brings the total amount of Syrian assets frozen in Switzerland to about 70 million francs.

Switzerland has imposed sanctions including travel bans and asset freezes on some 127 members of Assad’s regime and 40 companies and entities in protest at Damascus’ violent crackdown on demonstrations.

On May 29th, Bern also declared the Syrian ambassador “persona non grata” amid international outrage over the Houla massacre, in which 108 people, including 49 children, were killed in the central Syrian town.

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SYRIA

Swiss woman stands trial for attempting to join Islamic State

A 31-year-old woman from Winterthur who tried to travel to Syria to join Islamic State (IS) is standing trial under Swiss anti-terror laws.

Swiss woman stands trial for attempting to join Islamic State
The federal criminal court in Bellinzona. Photo: Swiss Confederation/OFCL

The alleged ‘jihadi tourist' appeared before Switzerland's federal criminal court in Bellinzona on Friday, the Swiss news agency SDA reported. 

In December 2015, the woman, accompanied by her four-year-old child, attempted to travel to Syria via Greece and Turkey in order to join IS, the authorities allege. 

Her intended destination was Raqqa, which was at the time an IS stronghold in Syria.

The woman was prevented from continuing her journey by the Greek authorities and was arrested at Zurich airport on her return to Switzerland in January 2016. 

The Swiss attorney general's office filed an indictment against the Swiss national for offences under the federal law that bans terror groups including Isis. 

According to the indictment, the woman radicalized herself through internet propaganda after converting to Islam in 2009.

It says the Swiss national believed it was the duty of all Muslims to support IS.

She said she rejected western values.

This is only the second case concerning a so-called ‘jihadi tourist' to go before Switzerland's federal criminal court. 

The first prosecution of its kind took place in 2016, when a 26-year-old man was found guilty of attempting to travel to join Isis and given an 18-month suspended jail sentence.

Islamic State has been banned in Switzerland since 2014.