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Iraq, Intelligence discovers the Isis treasure: over 500 mln seized

Isis in the Middle East has not only lost Syria, but also its treasure. Iraqi intelligence stops the largest cell for financing the Islamic State in the history of the country, with ramifications in Europe. More than 500 million dollars sized to jihadists

The ISIS network worldwide has suffered an unprecedented blow, thanks to Iraqi and US intelligence. According to Sky News Arabia, the 007 of Baghdad have in fact dismantled the largest financing cell of the Islamic State in the history of the country. In addition, they have seized a record number: over $ 500 million in investments belonging to the group. A blitz in the center of the capital, which occurred yesterday, led to the arrest of 15 Iraqi citizens and about twenty French. The latter, moreover, appear to have played a coordinating role in raising funds in Europe and in their subsequent distribution in the network. Above all in the Middle East, but not only. There are strong suspicions, in fact, that money may have also financed other Daesh groups.

How the Daesh cell worked

The Isis cell dismantled in Iraq was divided into branches, which operated in the country and abroad through “offices” to sort and move the funds. In addition, it used numerous counterfeiters and figureheads to hide its operations from the eyes of international intelligences. These, however, monitored the group and the flows of money. As soon as the chain of command of the Islamic State supporters State was identified with certainty and a window of opportunity was created, the operation was taken. The blitz was executed in a few hours by the anti-terrorist forces of Baghdad, coordinated by the local 007 and with the support of those of the US International Coalition. The jihadists, in fact, were blocked before they had time to react.

Isis is not in crisis only from the military point of view, but also from that of financing. The large seizure of funds in Iraq is incalculable damage to the militia

The large seizure of funds in Iraq represents incalculable damage to the operational capabilities and survival of Isis. In fact, following a series of factors, the Islamic State is increasingly running out of resources. Phenomenon sharpened by the continuous military defeats, among which the last one happened only a few days ago with the definitive loss of Syria. Above all in the Middle East, the controls of the various nations have become more stringent. This has made it more complicated to carry on smuggling, one of Daesh’s main sources of sustain (especially drugs, weapons and human beings). Moreover, the loss of almost all the territories in the region has reduced the pool of victims from which to draw for the trafficking of organs in the black market. Almost only the “donations” of individuals or entities remain to the militia. But even these, usually carried out using cryptocurrencies for not being detected, are under attack by international intelligence.

The main source of sustain for Daesh in the area, if the news was confirmed, could come from the arrival in Iraq of about 200 million dollars. These would have been brought by the fugitives from Deir Ezzor, following the constant advance of the SDF

The only help to Isis in this sense in the area could arrive, if the news released by CNN would be confirmed, from the 200 million that some members of the Islamic State have brought to the west of Iraq in the last six months. About a thousand jihadists, who escaped from the SDF offensive at Deir Ezzor in the Middle Euphrates River Valley (MERV), would have transferred what remained of the treasure in the neighboring country to the area still under Daesh control. The group, although numerous, is however closely surrounded and monitored by Baghdad (a large-scale operation could be launched soon). Therefore, even if the funds really had to be on the spot, transferring them in a “physical” way would be difficult and risky. So, at least for the moment, little or nothing is actually available for the militia. 

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