US slaps sanctions on Hamas finance official and facilitating network
United States–On Tuesday, the Treasury Department of United States slapped sanctions on the Hamas group. The targeted entities include a finance official of the group and network of financial facilitators and companies that act as a financial support system of the Palestinian militant group, generating significant revenue for the group.
“Hamas has generated vast sums of revenue through its secret investment portfolio while destabilizing Gaza, which is facing harsh living and economic conditions,” said Elizabeth Rosenberg, Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes.
The allegations by United States have been denied by Sami Abu Zuhri, a Hamas official. “The US allegations are incorrect and they come in the course of siding with the Israeli occupation and spreading its false allegations,” Abu Zuhri said.
Sanctions on Hamas’ Investment Office
The sanctions have also targeted Hamas’ Investment Office that holds group’s assets worth over $500 million. The Investment Office is said to operate companies in Turkey, Sudan, Saudi Arabia and Algeria, facilitating money influx for the operations of Hamas.
Sanctioned Hamas official
A finance official of Hamas has also been sanctioned by US Treasury Department. Hamas official Abdallah Yusuf Faisal Sabri, a Jordanian national based in Kuwait has been accused of working with Hamas’ Finance Ministry for many years now, and is said to oversee operational expenses of Hamas and transfer of large amounts of money.
Three financial facilitators and six companies have also been sanctioned by US, said to be used by Hamas to launder and conceal funds. These are based in Algeria, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.
“While Palestinians in Gaza face harsh living and economic conditions under Hamas, the terrorist group has amassed hundreds of millions in its secret investment portfolio,” said State Department spokesperson Ned Price. “Hamas maintains a violent agenda that harms both Israelis and Palestinians. The United States is committed to denying Hamas the ability to generate and move funds and to holding it to account for its role in promoting and carrying out violence,” Price said in a statement.
The sanctions have been imposed under Executive Order 13224. This allows the Treasury Department to block assets of all who commit or are a significant risk of committing terrorism acts.