Washington, DC-The U.S. Department of the Treasury today designated the Union of Good, an organization created by Hamas leadership to transfer funds to the terrorist organization.
"Terrorist groups such as Hamas continue to exploit charities to radicalize vulnerable communities and cultivate support for their violent activities," said Stuart Levey, Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence. "The U.S. Government will continue to expose and undermine the activities of charities working on behalf of Hamas and other terrorist groups. At the same time, we are working with the charitable sector to expand the range of legitimate alternatives forproviding charitable assistance to the Palestinian people."
Union of Good was designated today under Executive Order 13224, which targets terrorists, terrorist organizations, and those providing financial, technological, or material support to terrorists, terrorist organizations, or acts of terrorism. Any assets the Union of Good holds under U.S. jurisdiction are frozen and U.S. persons are prohibited from engaging in any transactions with the Union of Good.
The leadership of Hamas created the Union of Good in late-2000, shortly after the start of the second Intifada, in order to facilitate the transfer of funds to Hamas. The Union of Good acts as a broker for Hamas by facilitating financial transfers between a web of charitable organizations--including several organizations previously designated under E.O. 13224 for providing support to Hamas--and Hamas-controlled organizations in the West Bank and Gaza. The primary purpose of this activity is to strengthen Hamas' political and military position in the West Bank and Gaza, including by: (i) diverting charitable donations to support Hamas members and the families of terrorist operatives; and (ii) dispensing social welfare and other charitable services on behalf of Hamas.
Among the primary financiers of Union of Good projects are several organizations designated pursuant to E.O. 13224 for providing support to Hamas and other terrorist groups, including the International Palestine Relief and Development Fund (Interpal), Al- Aqsa Foundation, Comite de Bienfaisance et de Secours aux Palestiniens (CBSP), the Association de Secours Palestiniens (ASP) of Switzerland, the Palestinian Association in Austria (PVOE), and the Sanabil Association for Relief and Development in Lebanon. The Union of Good facilitates the transfer of tens of millions of dollars a year to Hamas- managed associations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
Funds raised by the Union of Good affiliates have been transferred to Hamas-managed organizations in the West Bank and Gaza. In addition to providing cover for Hamas financial transfers, some of the funds transferred by the Union of Good have compensated Hamas terrorists by providing payments to the families of suicide bombers. One of them, the Al-Salah Society, previously identified as a key support node for Hamas, was designated in August 2007 under E.O. 13224. The Society employed a number of members of the Hamas military wing and supported Hamas-affiliated combatants during the first Intifada.
The Union of Good's executive leadership and board of directors includes Hamas leaders, Specially Designated Global Terrorists (SDGTs), and other terrorist supporters. The secretary general of the Union of Good, for example, also acts as the vice-chairman of the United Kingdom-based Interpal, which was designated in 2003 for providing financial support to Hamas under the cover of charitable activity. As of mid-2007, this official served on the Hamas executive committee under Hamas leader Khaled Misha'al.
Board members of the Union of Good include a West Bank Hamas member, and Abd alMajid al-Zindani, a Yemen-based Hamas fundraiser who was designated pursuant to E.O. 13224 in 2004 for providing support to al-Qaida. In 2006, Zindani delivered a fundraising speech at a Hamas conference in Yemen where the crowd pledged millions of riyals for Hamas.
The United States is also actively working with the Arab-American community and other interested donors to provide alternate relief mechanisms to the Palestinian people as we take action against the HAMAS charitable infrastructure.
UNION OF GOOD
Coalition of Good
101 Days Campaign
P.O. Box 136301, Jeddah, Saudi Arabia 21313