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Arab Gulf states offer strong backing to anti-terror drive

posted on 16/12/2001: 2036 views

(WAM) A UAE newspaper today praised the Arab Gulf states' effort to back the global anti-terrorism campaign, especially at humanitarian and financial levels. The Dubai-based 'Gulf News' gave special credit to the UAE and Saudi Arabia for taking the lead in drafting regulations aimed at starving terrorist group of funds. 'The Arab Gulf states have been strong supporters of the worldwide coalition against terror right from the start. While they have not been part of the military action, they have supplied substantial amounts of humanitarian aid, which is part of the plan to help rebuild the country after ending the Taliban government in Afghanistan,' the paper wrote. 'This support for the people of Afghanistan, in combination with the action against their former government and Al Qaida, is an essential element of the coalition's action plan. Another vital part of the Gulf's support for the action is in helping stop the flow of funds to the terrorists. This coincides with the Gulf's need to clean up its financial systems to stop money laundering from organised crime in particular, so the anti-money laundering laws which were under preparation have been given more specific targets to take into account the need to stop funds getting to terrorists', it said.

It went on to say that the UAE and Saudi Arabia had taken a lead in this area in the Gulf, with both countries setting up financial intelligence units, and establishing strict rules for the banks and financial institutions to follow, as well as stopping the funds of particular organisations. This level of monitoring is a tough challenge for any country, and the Gulf states have done well in setting up the regulations and applying them. The paper explained that the action had been done in co-ordination with the international authorities and with advice from the U.S. Treasury and law enforcement bodies. 'It is inevitable that countries which try to develop free market environments in which business can flourish with little bureaucratic hindrance, will find their systems abused by criminals and terrorists. Such regulation is becoming more vital around the world, and the moves in the Gulf are part of that global clamp down on wrongdoers', the paper concluded. (WAM)


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