07:12 GMT08 March 2021
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    The Financial Action Task Force (on Money Laundering)(FATF) has found an unforeseen source of income for Daesh (Islamic State or ISIL). The source is a charitable organization in Italy, where thousands of people from all over Europe transferred money to help Syrian children. These funds were forwarded to Turkey falling into the hands of terrorists.

    In Italy, organizing such a scam is easier than in other European countries, as the NGOs in the country are not required to account for the movement of funds in their bank accounts. FATF Executive Secretary David Lewis stated in an interview to RT that he feels the states are making insufficient efforts to block extremists’ access to the cash flows.

    The Financial Action Task Force (on Money Laundering) (FATF), also known by its French name, Groupe d'action financière (GAFI), is an intergovernmental organization founded in 1989 on the initiative of the G7 to develop policies to combat money laundering.

    “The information on this case was given to us by the Italian authorities, one of the first and most active members of the FATF. This data suggests that non-profit and charitable organizations intentionally or unintentionally might have participated in the financing of terrorism,” executive secretary David Lewis told RT during an interview.

    Here's how this scheme worked. Thousands of individuals and entities from all over Europe transferred funds to the account of a charity organization in the Italian bank thinking that the money will be donated to help Syrian children.

    The money went to Turkey, and from there a recruiter for Daesh (ISIL) took the money and distributed it to terrorist groups.

    The news that Daesh uses charity money to finance its activities is certainly shocking. However, this is not the main source of income for these terrorists, RT reported.

    Daesh earns millions of dollars a day by smuggling oil and artifacts, as well as extortion and hostage-taking. All this makes it the richest terrorist organization in the world.

    According to the FATF, not all countries are taking the necessary steps to block extremists’ access to these funds.

    “Many countries ignore the necessary measures. They passed laws and created institutions and financial intelligence to fight terrorism and investigate, but do not engage in the effective implementation of the proposed measures,” Lewis said.

    He further explained, “This is especially true of freezing assets. We found that two-thirds of the countries have not frozen terrorist funds included in the UN list. Those governments that implement these measures are moving too slow. For there to be a result, it is necessary to act in a matter of hours. But in most cases, it can be either two days or a month before the authorities take any sort of action. During this time, assets can disappear without a trace.”


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    Daesh, asset freeze, charity, terrorism, money laundering, NGO, RT, Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Turkey, Italy, Syria
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