Noonan: €1m ‘terror’ fund frozen in accounts

Finance Minister Michael Noonan has confirmed that entities with ties to terrorist network al Qaeda have more than $1.2m (€1.13m) frozen in several bank accounts here.

Noonan: €1m ‘terror’ fund frozen in accounts

Mr Noonan made the disclosure in a written Dáil response to Fianna Fáil’s Michael McGrath. He also confirmed there are more than $1.6bn (€1.51bn) of funds owned by entities linked to Libya frozen in several Irish-based bank accounts.

In addition, Mr Noonan confirmed there is another €1m in funds frozen in accounts owned by parties with links to Iran, with another $620,951 frozen in bank accounts owned by entities linked to Syria. There are also frozen accounts containing small amounts belonged to entities connected to North Korea and Somalia.

The accounts are frozen through EU restrictive measures made as a result of resolutions of the UN Security Council through the publication of EU Regulations.

Mr Noonan explained that EU regulations are binding on all EU member states once published in the EU Official Journal and appropriate penalties for breach of the regulations are set by member states. Financial Institutions in Ireland are required to notify the Central Bank when funds have been frozen or blocked.

Mr Noonan said the Central Bank has advised him that they cannot reveal how much money is frozen in different financial providers “due to the confidentiality requirements of Section 33AK of the Central Bank Act 1942”.

Mr Noonan said the information provided is up to the end of 2016.

Last year, Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald said there is no specific information to suggest there may be a jihadi threat in Ireland. She previously told an Oireachtas committee in summer 2014 gardaí were aware that 30 suspected jihadis had travelled from Ireland to take part in various conflicts.

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