Crypto Accounts Used to Fund Hamas Military Wing Seized by Israel

Bank of Israel Initiates Against Crypto Terrorism and Money Launderings
  • Israeli authorities believe Hamas is funding its army with vast sums of crypto.
  • The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been related to crypto accounts before.

Al-Mutahadun exchange-linked entities have had 30 crypto accounts confiscated by Israel’s Defense Ministry. Twelve exchange accounts related to Hamas’s crypto wallets have been identified as the source of the funds.

Jerusalem Post reports that Israel’s Defense Ministry said on Feb. 28 that al-Mutahadun was funneling massive amounts of cash to Hamas’ armed wing. According to the ministry, the Shamlah family-owned al-Mutahadun bank transfers “tens of millions of dollars annually” to Hamas, mainly its military wing.

Terrorist Funding Group

Israeli authorities believe Hamas is funding its army with vast sums of cryptocurrencies, although the precise quantity has yet to be determined. It is anticipated that in 2021, Israeli authorities will classify al-Mutahadun as a terrorist funding group.

Hamas has begun accepting crypto contributions after the imposition of economic restrictions in 2019 severely limited Hamas’ capacity to combat Israel. This organization experimented with a complex cryptocurrency system to raise donations from overseas contributors. A few months later, they did just that. In recent years, the organization has had financial troubles due to banks’ attempts to avoid dealings with them.

A growing number of law enforcement organizations and institutions, notably BNY Mellon, are keeping track of crypto transactions to catch and punish financial criminals. Chainalysis, a blockchain transaction monitoring firm, found that just a tiny amount of crypto money is being used for criminal purposes.

The Israeli-Palestinian conflict has been related to crypto accounts before. Israel confiscated more than $800,000 in crypto assets from a Hamas-linked company earlier this year. In the summer of 2017, Israel’s National Bureau for Counter-Terrorism Financing confiscated $7.7 million in cryptocurrencies from 84 addresses.

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