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Israel Seizes 30 Crypto Accounts Used To Fund Hamas – Does This Hurt The Terror Group?

Legal

bitcoinist.com 01 March 2022 02:34, UTC
  
Reading time: ~3 m

Israel’s Defense Ministry has seized 30 crypto accounts belonging to organizations affiliated with the al-Mutahadun exchange company.

The crypto wallets associated with 12 exchange accounts have been linked to the Gaza-based terrorist group Hamas.

According to the Times of Israel, Israel’s Defense Ministry stated on Feb. 28 that al-Mutahadun aided Hamas’ military branch by transmitting huge amount of money per year.

The ministry said al-Mutahadun, which is owned by the Shamlah family, assists the Hamas terror group, particularly its military component, by transferring “tens of millions of dollars annually.

Crypto Accounts Used To Fund Terror

Although the exact sum of the seizures and the crypto assets confiscated are unknown, Israeli officials think Hamas uses massive amounts of dollars in cryptocurrency to fund its army.

In 2021, Israeli officials identified al-Mutahadun as a terrorist financing entity.

Since 2019, when economic sanctions began seriously limiting Hamas’ ability to fight Israel, Hamas has accepted cryptocurrency donations.

Months later, the group launched an experimental program in which it solicited funds from international donors via a complicated cryptocurrency system.

Due to banks’ efforts to avoid interactions with the group, it has experienced financial difficulties in recent years.

BTC total market cap at $820.410 billion in the daily chart | Source: TradingView.com

Concerted Efforts

Law enforcement agencies and banks worldwide, including BNY Mellon, are increasingly tracking crypto transactions in order to identify and prosecute financial fraudsters.

However, Chainalysis, a blockchain transaction tracking service, has discovered that just a small percentage of crypto money are utilized in illegal activity.

“I want to commend all organizations for their intelligence, operational, and legal collaboration. We will continue to cooperate in order to combat terror in any way possible,” Israeli Defense Minister Benny Gantz stated.

Related Article | Russia Said SWIFT Ban Could Be Tantamount To A Declaration Of War

This is not the first time crypto accounts have been linked to the Israel-Palestine conflict.

Earlier this year, Israel seized more than $800,000 in crypto assets from a Hamas-linked firm.

Israel’s National Bureau for Counter-Terrorism Financing seized $7.7 million in cryptocurrency from 84 addresses last summer.

As in the previous cases, officials contended that the cash were meant to finance the Islamic terrorist group Hamas.

Not Exclusive To Terror Funding

By no means is cryptocurrency-based philanthropy confined to sponsoring terrorism.

In the first two months of 2022, supporters of the Canada-based Freedom Convoy and Ukraine’s resistance movement against Russia raised millions of dollars in cryptocurrency donations.

Meanwhile, the hostilities between Israel and the Islamic State of Palestine seems to have abated recently. However, this was not the case in 2021 when the two sides declared war on each other.

Related Article | U.S. Banks Brace For Retaliatory Ransomware Attacks From Russia

Featured image from CNN, chart from TradingView.com


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