Israel Sanctions Facilitators of Hamas Money Laundering Network
Israel's defense ministries levied sanctions Wednesday against 20 individuals and companies who have facilitated Hamas’ money laundering network.
Benny Gantz, Israel’s Minister of Defense since 2020, signed warrants with the country’s Headquarters for Economic Warfare against Terrorism, the Intelligence Division, and the General Security Service to seize the property and assets of those who have laundered Hamas’ finances through investments in international real estate and construction firms.
Hamas is a Palestinian Sunni-Islamic fundamentalist group which has been labeled by Israel and several Western countries as a terrorist organization for its militant attacks against Israeli civilians.
The group has controlled a majority leadership in Palestine’s Legislative Council since 2006. No parliamentary elections have been held since then, however.
Under Hamas leadership, Palestine has publicly rejected Israel’s very right to exist, though the group has stated that it does not seek war against the Jewish people.
According to Israel's defense ministry, Hamas “secretly manages an investment array estimated to be worth hundreds of millions of dollars, through a network of international companies operating under the guise of legitimate companies.”
This, Gantz’s office said, is done to covertly launder Hamas’ finances across the world and conceal the group’s controlling interests over these companies, which are mainly in the real estate and infrastructure sectors and operate out of Sudan, Turkey, the United Arab Emirates, Saudi Arabia, and Algeria.
Israel publicly named Osama Ali, a member of the Shura Council of Hamas and said to maintain direct contact with the head of Hamas’ political bureau, as the head of the money laundering scheme since 2017.
Also named in the warrants were key companies that Hamas has invested in to finance their operations. These are listed as Sudan’s Al-Rowad For Real Estate Development Company Ltd; Anda, a Saudi construction firm; and the Algerian-based construction firms Agrogate Holding and the Sidar Company.
Sidar, Anda, and Agrogate Holding have ranked amongst Hamas’ larger investments in the real estate and construction sectors.
Israel’s move to sanction these individuals and entities runs parallel with the U.S. Department of the Treasury, which levied similar sanctions against the Hamas investment network back in May.