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Sunday, 19 September 2021

Britain targets Qatari national suspected of funding Islamic State militants

The UK adds Abd Al-Rahman Bin Umayr Al-Nuaymi, a Qatari national, to its list of suspected terrorist financiers, 10 months after the US did the same

Ahram Online from London, Sunday 19 Oct 2014
British counter terror police (Photo: Reuters)

A second Qatari national has been added to the UK terror list, singled out by the British government for his alleged role in funding terrorism.

Abd Al-Rahman Bin Umayr Al-Nuaymi has been banned from doing business in Britain, the British government has announced.

Al-Nuaymi, who has been an adviser to the Qatari government, is accused of sending $2.1 million a month to the militant jihadists of the Islamic State in Iraq.

He has been added to a British list of suspects targeted with financial sanctions as an alleged terrorist financier.

About 10 months ago, the US government imposed sanctions on Al-Nuaymi, claiming he was a "terrorist financier and facilitator who has provided money and material support and conveyed communications to Al-Qaeda and its affiliates in Syria, Iraq, Somalia and Yemen for more than a decade."

The US Treasury Department said he was "considered among the most prominent Qatar-based supporters of Iraqi Sunni extremists" and "reportedly oversaw the transfer of over $2 million per month to Al-Qaeda in Iraq for a period of time."

It is understood that the UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office is responsible for adding him to the sanctions list issued by the Asset Freezing Unit (AFU) of the UK Treasury.

According to AFU records, Al-Nuaymi's name was added to the sanctions list 10 days ago.

Media reports said the move by the UK Treasury will freeze any assets Al-Nuaymi, who is believed to reside the Qatari capital Doha, has in the UK and prevent any banks with British offices from dealing with him.

Al-Nuaymi has repeatedly denied the allegations against him.

Khalid Bin Mohammed Al-Attiyah, Qatar’s foreign minister, said his country did not support — “in any way” — the “evil” groups “terrorising innocent citizens and destabilising the Middle East.”

"The government supports the use of sanctions to address specific issues of threats to the UK," a government spokesman has been quoted as saying.

The Sunday Telegraph said the UK ministers are now facing calls to launch a full scale review of the sanctions regime, with MPs warning that the delay in banning a dangerous terrorist could mean others are slipping through the net.

MPs from across the political spectrum have demanded that ministers explain why British financial sanctions do not mirror the list of alleged terrorists whose assets have been frozen by the Americans, the paper added.

Sources told the Telegraph that British Prime Minister David Cameron promised he would personally re-examine the UK’s sanctions regime in light of concerns that it is too lenient.

At a meeting of Conservative MPs Tuesday night, the prime minister was challenged over the issue and was “unequivocal” in his view that there should be no discrepancy between British and American anti-terrorism sanctions, the paper said.

Al-Nuaymi is the second Qatari national to be added to the UK terror list.

On 16 October 2008, Khalifa Muhammad Turki Al-Subaiy was added to the list, which described him as a “Qatar-based terrorist financier and facilitator who has provided financial support to, and acted on behalf of, the senior leadership of Al-Qaeda, including moving recruits to Al-Qaeda training camps in South Asia.”

In January 2008, the Bahraini High Criminal Court convicted Al-Subaiy in absentia on charges of financing terrorism, engaging in terrorist training, facilitating the travel of others to receive terrorist training abroad, and membership in a terrorist organisation.

Two months later, Al-Subaiy was arrested in Qatar where he served his sentence and later was released from detention.

The Qatari government has “categorically” denied any role in funding terrorism.

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