UPDATED 6:34 AM PT — Fri. June 1, 2018
The State Department is designating a band of Syrian militants as a terrorist group, branding it an offshoot of the al-Nusrah Front.
The order came Thursday and targets members of Hayat Tahrir al-Sham also known as HTS.
The move aims to isolate the terror group and cut off its access to U.S. financial aid.
This is taking effect as the State Department considers sending millions of dollars to local groups in the war-torn country to help stabilize the region post ISIS.
The HTS is reportedly expanding its presence in northwestern Syria, where it is allegedly establishing a religious police force similar to that of the Islamic State.