Israel can’t destroy Hamas as global funding ‘immune from shells’, experts say

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Hamas’s international financial web is now “immune from Israeli shells”, experts believe – meaning Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will struggle to achieve his goal of destroying the militant group. Stephen Reimer, an associate fellow at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) specialising in financial crime, told i that “the total destruction of Hamas would not come to pass even if “all of Gaza is levelled to the ground”. “Its financial network is truly global, making it immune from Israeli shells,” he said. “Its global financial network extends way beyond Gaza and even the Middle East.” ...Elsewhere, banking systems in countries like Qatar and Turkey have acted as a “conduit” for Hamas funding, according to Mr Reimer – some of Turkey’s biggest banks, including Kuveyt Turk, have been accused by Israel and America of knowingly storing Hamas’s cash. “[Hamas] is not designated as a terrorist organisation by all governments,” Mr Reimer explained, “so they can evade sanctions by operating in jurisdictions where the government might be looking the other way.”