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 Treasury Designates Key Hizballah Fundraising Organization


8/29/2006

 

The U.S. Department of the Treasury today designated the Islamic Resistance Support Organization (IRSO), a key Hizballah fundraising organization.

"While some terrorist-supporting charities try to obscure their support for violence, IRSO makes no attempt to hide its true colors.  IRSO's fundraising materials present donors with the option of sending funds to equip Hizballah fighters or to purchase rockets that Hizballah uses to target civilian populations," said Stuart Levey, Treasury's Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI)  "IRSO works to inflict suffering rather than alleviate it."
 
IRSO was named today pursuant to Executive Order 13224, which is aimed at disrupting the financial lines supporting terrorism.  This action shuts IRSO out of the U.S. financial system by prohibiting transactions with the organization by U.S. persons, as well as freezing any assets IRSO may have under U.S. jurisdiction. 

Hizballah uses IRSO to solicit donations in support of its terrorist activities.  Specifically, IRSO solicits funds for Hizballah through advertisements broadcast on Hizballah's al-Manar television station.  IRSO has identified itself to prospective donors as one and the same as Hizballah.

Solicitation materials distributed by IRSO inform prospective donors that funds will be used to purchase sophisticated weapons and conduct operations.  Indeed, donors can choose from a series of projects to contribute to, including, supporting and equipping fighters and purchasing rockets and ammunition.

Identifying Information

Islamic Resistance Support Organization
AKAs:   Hayat al-Dam Lil-Muqawama al-Islamiya
Islamic Resistance Support Association

Location:  Beirut, Lebanon

Background on Hizballah
Hizballah is a Lebanon-based terrorist group that, until September 11, 2001, was responsible for more American deaths than any other terrorist organization.  Hizballah is known or suspected to have been involved in numerous terrorist attacks throughout the world, including the suicide truck bombings of the U.S. Embassy and U.S. Marine Corps barracks in Beirut in 1983 and the U.S. Embassy annex in Beirut in September 1984. Hizballah also executed the 1985 hijacking of TWA Flight 847 en route from Athens to Rome.

Most recently, in July 2006 Hizballah precipitated a violent conflict that resulted in scores of civilian casualties in Israel and Lebanon.

On January 25, 1995, the Annex to the Executive Order 12947 listed Hizballah as a Specially Designated Terrorist (SDT). The Department of State designated Hizballah as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) in 1997. Additionally, on October 31, 2001, Hizballah was designated as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist under Executive Order 13224.

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