USA sanctions Sudan companies 'with links to Hamas'
The US Department of the Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) revealed an expansive Hamas network, with one Hamas financier, Hisham Younis Yahia Qafisheh, operating and managing at least two Sudan-based companies, Agrogate Holding and Al Rowad Real Estate Development, in order to generate revenue for the Palestinian group.
Qafisheh, a Turkey-based Jordanian national, allegedly played an important role in transferring funds on behalf of various companies linked to Hamas’ investment portfolio. Qafisheh was involved in managing the operations and held key roles in several companies controlled by Hamas, including serving as a member of the Board of Directors at Sudan-based Agrogate Holding, and Chairman of the Board at Al Rowad Real Estate Development.
Both Sudanese companies have been assigned ‘Specially Designated Global Terrorist’ status, pursuant to an executive order, stipulating that any linked accounts are prohibited from business in the US.
The Hamas Investment Office, was reported to have held assets estimated to be worth more than 500 million (USD), including companies operating in Sudan, Turkey, Saudi Arabia, Algeria, and the United Arab Emirates.
Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes, Elizabeth Rosenberg, said “Hamas has generated vast sums of revenue through its secret investment portfolio while destabilising Gaza, which is facing harsh living and economic conditions. Hamas maintains a violent agenda that harms both Israelis and Palestinians.”
On the matter of US-Sudan sanctions pertaining to the human rights situation in Sudan, John Godfrey, the US Ambassador to Sudan addressed a Foreign Relations Committee in Congress yesterday, saying that, “sanctions are an important tool to name and shame, and to drive change and behaviour”. He added that, “it was important to understand the practical impact” on the financing of individual stakeholders and the impact on the Sudanese economy, however.
He went on to renew his support for the trilateral mechanism of the United Nations Integrated Transition Assistance Mission in Sudan (UNITAMS), African Union (AU), and the Intergovernmental Authority on Development (IGAD).
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