Riyadh Based Terrorist Financing Targeting Center Concludes Exercise on Disrupting Illicit Finance
April 01, 2019
The Terrorist Financing Targeting Center (TFTC), a multilateral effort among the United States, Saudi Arabia, and other GCC countries, convened a workshop on the 27th of March, focusing on Iranian illicit finance schemes and the risks Iran poses to the international financial system.
The TFTC, a collaborative approach to confronting new and evolving threats arising from terrorist financing, was launched in May 2017, and represents a new and creative response that leverages existing tools and formalizes cooperation between the United States, Saudi Arabia and partners in the Gulf to counter terrorist financing.
The TFTC’s goals are to Identify, track, and share information regarding terrorist financial networks, coordinate joint disruptive actions, and offer support to countries in the region that need assistance building capacity to counter terrorist finance threats.
TFTC members presented a series of case studies and discussed best practices and steps their governments have taken or could take to further disrupt the Iranian regime's malign activities.
The case studies included two ballistic missile procurement networks, that used front companies to obfuscate the end user of goods for missile proliferation and a cyber-scheme involving virtual currencies that enabled illicit financial activities.
The case study highlighted Iran-related illicit finance and sanction evasion schemes intended to skirt anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT).
TFTC member states also offered expert support on best practices for complying with the United Nations Security Council Resolutions and Financial Action Task Force international standards.
Participants discussed key features of countering weapons of mass destruction proliferation financing, vulnerabilities of general trading companies, how to strengthen financial transparency of the private sector by implementing appropriate customer due diligence and other preventive measures, and the importance of effectively regulating and supervising digital asset financial activities and related digital currency providers for AML/CFT.
The capacity building workshop held in Riyadh last week was critical to the core TFTC mission; to disrupt the flow of illicit funds to terrorists and terrorist organizations.