The financial empire of Hamas

Nov. 21, 2023 /Finance/ —

Allegations of money laundering in the City of London have been the subject of investigations and regulatory measures. The UK government has taken steps to strengthen its anti-money laundering regime, including increasing transparency requirements and enhancing cooperation with international partners.

The financial empire of Hamas, the Palestinian militant group that controls the Gaza Strip, is reportedly located outside of Gaza, with significant investments in countries like Turkey, Sudan, and Qatar. The City of London, a major global financial center, has been criticized for its role in money laundering, with some allegations that illicit funds from Hamas and other groups have flowed through its financial institutions. The UK has a complex relationship with Israel, maintaining diplomatic ties while also expressing criticism of its policies towards the Palestinians.

 Let’s break down each element:

  • Hamas’s financial empire: Hamas has a vast network of businesses and investments that generate significant revenue, estimated to be over $1 billion annually. These holdings are located outside of Gaza, in countries that are more sympathetic to Hamas’s cause and less likely to impose sanctions.

  • City of London and money laundering: The City of London is a global hub for financial services, and its reputation has been tarnished by allegations of money laundering. Some reports suggest that funds linked to Hamas and other illicit actors have passed through the City’s financial system.

  • UK’s relationship with Israel: The UK maintains diplomatic relations with Israel and has been a key proponent of a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. However, the UK has also criticized Israel’s policies towards the Palestinians, particularly its use of force and expansion of settlements in the occupied territories.

The interplay of these factors creates a complex situation where Hamas, with its substantial financial resources, operates in a global financial system that includes the City of London. The UK’s relationship with Israel adds another layer of complexity to the situation, as the UK seeks to balance its support for Israel with its concerns about Palestinian rights.

It is important to note that there is no evidence that the UK government has knowingly provided financial support to Hamas. However, the fact that Hamas has been able to establish a financial empire outside of Gaza suggests that there may be weaknesses in the UK’s financial system that allow illicit funds to flow freely.