- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 10, 2002


The U.S. government, in its latest effort to choke off money to Osama bin Laden, yesterday blocked the financial assets of two organizations and two individuals suspected of financing terrorism.

Government officials said the four are linked to bin Laden's al Qaeda terror network.

The order applied to two organizations: the Afghan Support Committee and the Revival of Islamic Heritage Society. The committee, which the government said bin Laden set up, has offices in Peshawar, Pakistan, and Jalalabad, Afghanistan. The action affected the society's offices in Pakistan and Afghanistan but not in Kuwait.

The Treasury Department said the two groups portrayed themselves as legitimate charitable organizations but diverted money intended for widows and orphans to support al Qaeda's terrorist activities.

The two individuals named in the order are Abu Bakr Al-Jaziri of Peshawar, whom the government said is the finance chief of the Afghan Support Committee and also had served as bin Laden's chief fund-raiser; and Abd al-Mushin Al-Libi, whom the government said runs the Pakistan office of the Revival of Islamic Heritage Society and manages the Afghan Support Committee's office in Peshawar.

These individuals and organizations "have been stealing from widows and orphans to fund al Qaeda terrorism," Treasury Secretary Paul H. O'Neill said at a news conference.

"The Afghan Support Committee, branches of the Revival of Islamic Heritage Society and two of their employees defrauded well-intentioned donors and turned funds meant for good into funds for evil," Mr. O'Neill said.

Treasury Department spokesman Rob Nichols said the government does not believe the four entities have financial assets in the United States.

He said it was possible that people in the United States gave money to the two organizations.

The four new names bring to 168 the total number of entities whose finances have been targeted by the U.S. government since the September 11 attacks. Roughly $68 million in financial assets of terrorists has been blocked worldwide since the attacks.

The United States has been working closely with other nations to stop the flow of money to terrorist networks.

The four new entities were listed yesterday on the Web site of the Treasury Department's Office of Foreign Assets Control.

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