Press Center

 Treasury Designates Senior Taliban Leader


10/20/2015

Action Targets Individual Responsible for Taliban’s Military and Financial Operations
 
WASHINGTON – Today, the U.S. Department of the Treasury named senior Taliban leader Torek Agha as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) pursuant to Executive Order 13224.  The Treasury Department targeted Torek Agha for his role as a key Taliban fundraiser and member of a Taliban leadership council responsible for facilitating external funding and military operations in Afghanistan.  As a result of today’s action, any property or interest in property of the designated person subject to U.S. jurisdiction is frozen.  Additionally, transactions by U.S. persons involving Torek Agha are generally prohibited. 

“Torek Agha, a long-standing Taliban member, has been central to spearheading brutal military attacks and raising millions of dollars to support the Taliban’s ruthless acts of terrorism,” said Acting Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence Adam Szubin. “Treasury has aggressively targeted those supporting the Taliban’s financial and military aims, and today’s action marks yet another step in our efforts to financially cripple the group.” 

Leadership

As of late 2014, senior Taliban leader Torek Agha served on the Taliban’s Quetta Shura, a regional leadership body that directs Taliban activities in southern and western Afghanistan.  Additionally, Torek Agha was a member of a group responsible for the Taliban leadership’s strategic planning and logistics operations, while also functioning as a key commander and member of the Taliban’s military council.  This council is responsible for both overseeing Taliban operations and approving appointments of Taliban military leadership, and it also plays a role in the allocation of funds for Taliban operations.

Over the years, Torek Agha was involved in authorizing the assassination of numerous Afghan government officials.  Moreover, he was one of four senior Taliban commanders who, as of early 2012, had authorized the use of an unidentified chemical powder to assassinate senior Afghan government officials.  

As evidence of his long-standing role as a terrorism facilitator, Torek Agha in mid-2006 assigned Taliban fighters to various operational Taliban commanders and was one of the main links between the Taliban leadership and the groups of Arab fighters arriving in both Pakistan and Afghanistan to fight coalition forces.

Fundraising 

For a number of years, Torek Agha worked as a prolific fundraiser, funneling millions from the Gulf to Taliban coffers.  As of early 2012, Torek Agha received a donation from an unidentified Arab donor with instructions to pass the money to the Taliban’s shadow provincial governor of Uruzgan for assassination operations.  Further, in 2012 Torek Agha and several other Taliban Quetta Shura members selected mullahs to travel to Saudi Arabia and other Arab countries to collect on the Taliban’s behalf both financial donations from Afghan businessmen and money from smugglers.  In mid-2011, Torek Agha was instructed by a Taliban senior leader to travel to Saudi Arabia during Ramadan to arrange external funding.  

In 2010, Torek Agha collected approximately $4 million from Gulf-based donors for the Taliban, the majority of which he provided to fellow senior leader and Taliban finance collector SDGT Haji Mullah Gul Agha.  Various Gulf-based associates and donors contributed $3.6 million for Torek Agha’s 2010 Taliban fundraising transfers to Gul Agha.  

As of late 2009, Torek Agha held $2 million from Gulf donors intended for the Taliban’s Quetta Shura treasurer.  The substantial donations that Torek Agha collected for the Quetta Shura during Ramadan in 2009 were held in Pakistani banks under the control of the Taliban’s head treasurer. 

To see the identifying information pertaining to today’s actions, click here

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