Hamas Secret Financial Network Worth Hundreds of Millions

YERUSHALAYIM -
Members of the Hamas political bureau arrive at the Rafah border crossing with Egypt for talks in Cairo. (Abed Rahim Khatib/Flash90)

The Hamas terror organization, which rules the Gaza Strip, holds secret foreign investments worth hundreds of millions of dollars in various businesses in countries across the region, The Jerusalem Post revealed on Thursday.

 

Citing intelligence sources, the report said that if western countries would act against these assets it could significantly impair Hamas terrorist operations.

 

From the early 2000s until 2018, Hamas controlled some 40 commercial companies in Turkey, the UAE, Saudi Arabia, Jordan, Algeria and Sudan, according to sources in Double Cheque, which provides information to businesses to help them avoid illegal activity. Most of the companies are engaged in real estate and infrastructure.

 

It charges that Hamas operatives exploit legal loopholes and loose regulations to funnel money from the companies controlled by Hamas operatives into terrorism without the knowledge of local authorities.

 

For example, Double Cheque said that “Hamas has chosen to manage its secret investment portfolio in Turkey because of the weak financial system in Turkey, which enables Hamas to hide its money-laundering activity and tax violations from the regulatory bodies.”

 

“The details of the Hamas operatives mentioned in the documents of the portfolio’s companies prove that this is a false portfolio,” the report said. “In total, there are nine Hamas operatives who are members of more than 18 companies. One operative holds key positions in as many as 13 different companies, all controlled by Hamas’s secret investment portfolio.”

 

According to Uzi Shaya, a former senior financial-warfare officer in the Israeli intelligence community, in recent years, “one of the most powerful tools for Israel to combat terrorists, and harm their finances, has been weakened. From an issue that was given strategic importance, it has been neglected to the point of being, at best, a tactical consideration,” he was quoted as saying by the Post.

 

“The State of Israel needs to act and return to the basics in which financially harming various terrorist organizations is a significant part of harming those organizations themselves,” he said.

 

The Defense Ministry declined to respond to a request for comment from the Post.