Israeli raids on some exchange offices 'also used to gather intelligence'

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Hamas Financing


To eradicate Hamas, Israeli forces are not just targeting fighters in the Gaza Strip. On Thursday, Israel's military raided several currency exchange offices in Ramallah and other West Bank cities, seizing millions of dollars. "During the operation, terrorist funds were discovered and tens of millions of shekels, safes, documents, recording systems and phones were confiscated," the army statement said. The operation also targeted cryptocurrencies, with a special cybercrime unit involved in the investigation, the military said. On the same day, the United States imposed sanctions on three currency exchanges, two in Yemen and one in Turkey, as well as an individual, whom it accuses of participating in the financing of Yemeni Houthi rebels responsible for attacks on commercial vessels in the Red Sea, which it says were carried out in response to Israeli operations in the Gaza Strip. The U.S. Treasury says these companies helped transfer millions of dollars to the Houthis through an Iranian financial facilitator. Tom Keatinge, director of the Centre for Financial Crime and Security Studies (CFCS) at the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI), gives L'Orient-Le Jour an update on this financing system used for illicit purposes.