US, Argentina Holds Workshop On Countering Hezbollah Terror جيرازولم بوست: ورشة عمل أميركية ارجنتينية لمناقشة سبل مواجهة إرهاب حزب الله Jerusalem Post/June 13/2019
Workshop held month before 25th anniversary of the AMIA bombings.
The United States and Argentina held a workshop this week on countering Hezbollah’s terror activities in the Western Hemisphere, a month before the 25th anniversary of the AMIA bombings.
The workshop, held in Buenos Aires on Tuesday and Wednesday, included law enforcement personnel and financial practitioners from Argentina, Chile, Colombia, Panama, Paraguay and Peru, as well as representatives from Ameripol.
Officials from the US Departments of State, Justice and the Treasury, as well as the Federal Bureau of Investigation, National Counterterrorism Center, and Drug Enforcement Administration, also participated in the meeting.
The summit was held ahead of Western Hemisphere Ministerial that the Government of Argentina will host commemorating the 25th anniversary of the terrorist bombing of the AMIA Jewish Center in the Argentine capital on July 18, 1994 which killed 85 people and injured over 300 others.
According to a statement released by the US State Department, the workshop focused on Hezbollah’s global modus operandi and its terrorist and criminal infrastructure and activities in the Americas.
“Participants discussed various techniques to constrain and counter the group’s illicit activities, including the financial and law enforcement tools available to identify, investigate, and prosecute Hezbollah’s global support and facilitation networks. Participants also discussed Hezbollah attempts to continue and expand its fundraising in the Western hemisphere, especially in light of the current financial pressure on Hezbollah,” the statement said.
The finances of the Lebanese Shi’ite militant group, designated as a Foreign Terrorist Organization by dozens of countries across the globe, has been hit hard due in recent years by sanctions placed the United States.
The US has also passed the Hezbollah International Financing Prevention Act threatening sanctions against anyone who finances the group in any significant way. But the designation has not affected Hezbollah’s patron, Iran, which continues to provide the terrorist group with financial and military support.
Hezbollah also receives significant financial aid by supporters who live abroad as well as through charities and a wide variety of criminal activities including fraud and trafficking in drugs, arms and blood diamonds.
Not based in Lebanon, Hezbollah’s crime network is global, and based primarily in Africa. The group also runs an international network of criminal and narcotic rings in Africa, as well as both North and South America.
Hezbollah operatives also rely on legitimate business enterprises that in truth are shell companies which raise, launder and transfer vast sums to the group.