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A German newspaper “reveals” a network of “secret investments” by Hamas

Based on what it described as “Western security circles”, the conservative German newspaper “Die Welt” revealed in its report a “network of secret investments” belonging to Hamas in several countries. How does this network work? In which countries are they concentrated? Where does its revenue go?

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The German newspaper “Die Welt” stated in a report published on Tuesday (August 10, 2021) and “based on documents obtained exclusively from Western security sources” that the value of Hamas’ secret international investment portfolio in 2018, which the movement itself estimated at about 338 One million dollars, its real value exceeds half a billion dollars, according to other estimates.

The newspaper added in its exclusive report that the portfolio includes 40 international companies that are active, especially in the construction sector, revealing that the companies’ headquarters are in Turkey, Saudi Arabia, the Emirates, Sudan and Algeria.

Hamas spokesman Hazem Qassem did not respond to the German conservative newspaper’s request for comment.

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From Saudi Arabia to Turkey

The German newspaper states that documents about Hamas’ financial assets abroad were found on a computer belonging to the movement. These documents contained details about Hamas’ budgets from 2008 to the beginning of 2018, which the movement appears to have used for internal financial oversight.

The most recent data, from May 2017 to January 2018, was made available exclusively to Die Welt newspaper.

According to the newspaper’s report, Hamas’s activities abroad over the past twenty years were concentrated in Saudi Arabia. However, in the last three years, it moved it to Turkey after the increasing Saudi crackdown on its economic activities. In 2015, the United States imposed sanctions on the Asyaf International Holding Group for Trade and Investment, which its director was said to be using to fund Hamas.

Expert Matthew Levitt, who held a senior position in the US Treasury Department in the field of counterterrorism and now leads the Washington Institute’s counterterrorism program, confirmed to the German newspaper that Hamas transferred its activities from Saudi Arabia to Turkey. The expert noted that most of Hamas’ investments there are “linked” to Trend Gyo, which did not respond to a request for comment sent by the German newspaper.

While Western security circles that have analyzed the documents do not believe President Recep Tayyip Erdogan knew of those activities, expert Jonathan Schanzer, who formerly worked as an analyst for terrorist organizations at the US Treasury and today works at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, says he knows from reliable sources with knowledge. Erdogan all the activities of Hamas in his country, including the non-political ones.

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Investment returns

The German newspaper “Die Welt” quotes what it describes as Western security circles as saying that the head of that investment portfolio in Turkey is a person residing in Lebanon and traveling frequently to Turkey.

A large part of the proceeds go to Gaza and to the financing of Hamas activities abroad, and the salaries of the leaders, some of which go to Arabs in Israel. And the newspaper reported, quoting its Western security sources, that “between 30 and 40 percent of the funds are used to carry out military operations and terrorist objectives.”

According to the newspaper, the movement uses the same tools of organized crime: money changers instead of banks to transfer money to Gaza and to evade tax authorities in the countries in which it operates. As another example, the newspaper reported receiving apartment rents in cash and not through banks.

The conservative right-wing German newspaper concludes its report with the words of the expert Jonathan Schanzer, who previously worked as an analyst for terrorist organizations in the US Treasury and works today at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies: “I expect that the countries where Hamas financial activities are based will take measures to dismantle them for fear of Western sanctions. This is in addition to increasing the risks associated with illegal financial activity within its borders. Investment returns

The German newspaper “Die Welt” quotes what it describes as Western security circles as saying that the head of that investment portfolio in Turkey is a person residing in Lebanon and traveling frequently to Turkey.

A large part of the proceeds go to Gaza and to the financing of Hamas activities abroad, and the salaries of the leaders, some of which go to Arabs in Israel. And the newspaper reported, quoting its Western security sources, that “between 30 and 40 percent of the funds are used to carry out military operations and terrorist objectives.”

According to the newspaper, the movement uses the same tools of organized crime: money changers instead of banks to transfer money to Gaza and to evade tax authorities in the countries in which it operates. As another example, the newspaper reported receiving apartment rents in cash and not through banks.

The conservative right-wing German newspaper concludes its report with the words of the expert Jonathan Schanzer, who previously worked as an analyst for terrorist organizations in the US Treasury and works today at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies: “I expect that the countries where Hamas financial activities are based will take measures to dismantle them for fear of Western sanctions. This is in addition to increasing the risks associated with illegal financial activity within its borders.

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August 10, 2021, Published on DW

https://he.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=1385366

 

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