WASHINGTON - The United States on Friday designated French jihadist recruiter Omar Diaby a "global terrorist" subject to US economic sanctions, the State Department said.

The 40-year-old Al-Nusra Front militant, who also uses the name Omar Omsen, became notorious last year for faking his own death in order to leave Syria for surgery.

According to the designation, Diaby leads a group of 50 French volunteers who traveled to Syria and signed up with the Al-Nusra Front, Al-Qaeda's franchise in the region.

Nusra says it broke with Al-Qaeda in July and has rebranded itself Jabhat Fateh al-Sham. "Although assumed killed in August 2015, Diaby re-emerged in May 2016, claiming his death was a ploy to allow him to travel to Turkey for an operation," the designation said.

Meanwhile, US on Friday added a senior Hamas official, the Islamist group's former interior minister Fathi Hammad, to its "global terrorist" list.

Hamas, the Palestinian party controlling the Gaza Strip, has already itself been proscribed by the United States as a "foreign terrorist organization."

Under the new designation, US citizens and companies will be banned from doing business with Hammad and any property he holds in areas under US jurisdiction will be frozen.

According to the US State Department, which issued the designation, as interior minister Hammad used his position to "coordinate terrorist cells."

The statement also said Hammad founded Al-Aqsa TV, "with programs designed to recruit children to become Hamas armed fighters and suicide bombers upon reaching adulthood."