Select Committee on European Union Fortieth Report


FINANCING TERRORISTS (15203/05)

Letter from the Chairman to Rt Hon Hazel Blears MP, Minister of State for Policing, Security and Community Safety, Home Office

  Sub-Committee F (Home Affairs) of the House of Lords Select Committee on the European Union considered this document at a meeting on 1 February. The Committee cleared this document from scrutiny.

  The Communication is based on the assumption that prevention of terrorist financing is an important weapon in the fight against terrorism. The Committee is not convinced that such initiatives would prevent the worst terrorist incidents. The Final Report of the 9/11 Commission states that "the 9/11 plotters spent somewhere between $400,000 and $500,000 to plan and conduct their attack" (section 5.4 of the report). The Madrid and London bombings have been shown to have had only a very modest financial input.

  In particular, paragraph 3.1 of the Communication emphasises the importance of anti-money laundering initiatives. We draw to your attention a statement by Dr Anthony H Cordesman, a former director of intelligence assessment in the Office of the US Secretary of Defense who, in as address last month to the Royal United Services Institute Conference on Transnational Terrorism, said bluntly: "Money laundering initiatives are largely a waste of time".

2 February 2006



 
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