Kuwait urges international cooperation to fight terror
Jarallah: State needs to do more against IS funding
KUWAIT: Kuwait yesterday stressed the importance of joining international forces in the fight against terrorist groups that pose a threat to the world’s peace and security. The remark was made by Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs Khaled Al-Jarallah in his statement to the opening of a meeting of a panel on preventing the funding of the so-called Islamic State (IS), under the umbrella of the global coalition against IS.
No single state, no matter how big and strong it may be, can face the danger of terrorism on its own, Jarallah said during the meeting of the Counter-ISIL Finance Group (CIFG). He also stressed the significance of collective action to counter the phenomenon. He referred to efforts by the international community to fight all forms of terrorism, which undermines the world’s security and stability, pointing to the resolutions issued by the UN Security Council and the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) reiterating countries’ responsibility to prevent financing terrorism.
Jarallah affirmed Kuwait’s commitment to FATF’s recommendations on fighting terrorism, especially through legislations and other measures that guarantee transparency of information on donations to charity works overseas. The meeting comes amid the battle to liberate Iraq’s Mosul from IS, said Jarallah, adding that Kuwait is providing full support to Iraq in this fierce confrontation. Kuwait has previously hosted a series of coalition meetings aiming to prevent funding for the group. Last April, the country hosted a meeting for the international coalition’s communication group.
“We still have a lot to do, though we are satisfied with what we have done so far,” Jarallah later told reporters. “We are ready to cooperate with our brothers and friends,” he said, responding to US criticism of
Kuwait and Qatar over their steps to cut the financing of militants. Formed early last year, CIFG is led by the United States, Italy and Saudi Arabia and is made up of over 35 countries and four international bodies. Jarallah said Kuwait “has come a long way in introducing legislation that controls the collection of (charity) donations”, a suspected channel of funding extremists.
The CIFG takes a global approach to undermining the flow of funds to the jihadist group, according to Adam Szubin, US Treasury’s acting Under Secretary on Countering the Financing of Terrorism. Szubin said last week that the meeting in Kuwait City aims “to share information and continue developing and coordinating countermeasures against ISIL’s (IS) financial activity worldwide”. He said the Treasury was working closely with Kuwait and Qatar in particular to strengthen the technical side of the fight against terrorism finance, but “there is room for improvement”.
Szubin said the effort to choke off funding was showing some success. IS fighters had been abandoning the fight “as their pay and benefits have been cut and delayed, in what ISIL members in Mosul are calling a ‘recession’”, he said, referring to Iraq’s battle to recapture the city from militants. — Agencies
KUWAIT: US Assistant Secretary for Terrorism Financing Daniel Glaser (left) and Kuwait’s Foreign Ministry Undersecretary Khaled Al-Jarallah attend the meeting of the Counter-ISIL Finance Group (CIFG) yesterday.