Hafez Assad, 18, named after his grandfather, will not be allowed to travel or maintain assets in the United States, the State Department said.
It is part of a second set of sanctions under the Caesar Act, a US law that went into effect in June and aims never to normalize the Assad regime, even when it manages to regain control of much of Syria. after a brutal 9-year war.
“We will continue to hold Bashar al-Assad and his regime accountable for their atrocities, while keeping the memory of their victims alive,” US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said in a statement.
“It is time to end Assad’s useless, brutal war,” he insisted.
The new sanctions also hit Syrian businessman Wassim Anwar al-Katan, who is involved in major construction projects in Damascus.
However, the United States has not yet focused on business interests from Assad’s key ally Russia. Fears of action against foreign investors under Caesar’s law have wreaked havoc on Syria’s war-torn economy, clouding hopes of recovery.
The United States has already imposed sanctions on Bashar al-Assad and his wife, Asma.
A senior US official said the sanctions against their only adult child were aimed at preventing Hafez from becoming a conduit for his family abroad.
“This is also because we have seen an increase in his fame in the family,” the official journalist said on condition of anonymity.
“Older children essentially continue to do business on behalf of and at the expense of their sanctioned parents or other adult relatives,” he said.
The young Hafez al-Assad mostly makes headlines about his passion for mathematics, participating in international competitions in Brazil and Romania.
In 2017, he finished 528th out of 615 in a race in Rio de Janeiro.