The Bank of China has been accused in US courts of transferring millions of dollars to terrorist organisations Hamas and Islamic Jihad between 2004 and 2007. The Chinese government isn’t interested despite having laws on the books prohibiting money laundering, failing to investigate the claims despite them receiving widespread publicity.
The writ claims the bank – China’s third largest – “knowingly assisted Hamas and Islamic Jihad.” If successful, the claim could cost the institution hundreds of millions of dollars in compensation to be paid to the victims of terror.
The bank allegedly sent dozens of wire transfers to the terrorists, in total several million dollars. AP reports:
The U.S. lawsuit says Israeli officials met with Chinese police and central bank officials in 2005 seeking action to prevent Bank of China from making more transfers but the practice continued.
Transfers for Hamas and Islamic Jihad were initiated in the Middle East, sent to branches in the U.S., then to an account at a bank branch in Guanzhou, China, the suit said. It said the money was then wired to group leaders in Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.
The bank has denied the claims made in a lawsuit filed against it by one hundred Israeli citizens including the parents of children killed in terrorist attacks by those terror organisations.