Qatar helps al-Qaeda financier evade American sanctions

The Wall Street Journal revealed that Khalifa al-Subaiy, a former Qatari central banker jailed for funding Al-Qaeda, was still able to withdraw $120,000 every year from his accounts at the Qatar National Bank. Al-Subaiy, though, has been listed by the Treasury Department as a terrorist financier since 2008. President Trump is right to push for a stronger anti-terror policy.

Qatar officially pretends it does not support terrorism. However, the Khalifa al-Subaiy story suggests that the small Persian Gulf state plays a crucial role in financing Islamic terrorism. Extremist groups such as the Taliban, some Al-Qaeda branches, and Muslim Brotherhood affiliated organizations are repeatedly accused of being funded by gas-rich Qatar.

Since 9/11, the U.S. make relentless efforts backed by United Nations Security Council resolutions to put an end to the financial support for terror. Neighboring Gulf countries and the U.S. repeatedly complain about Qatar's lack of UN sanctions enforcement. Qatar's commitment remains unclear and this new case makes the country's position even more delicate.

As a former head of Qatar's central bank, Khalifa al-Subaiy provided support to al-Qaeda heads including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks. Khalifa al-Subaiy was added to the United Nations terror blacklist in 2008. Although his assets were frozen, the WSL just revealed that al-Subaiy was allowed to withdraw up to $10,000 per month from his Qatar National Bank account to cover supposed "basic necessities." This allowance was authorized by Qatar, which subsequently evaded the UN freeze.

Even more disturbing than the lavish monthly withdrawal is the way the money was used. Indeed, the monthly $10,000 helped Khalifa al-Subaiy finance terrorist groups at least until 2013.

In addition to UN sanctions, al-Subaiy was condemned in 2008 in Bahrain on charges of financing and facilitating terrorism. Not showing up at his trial, he was eventually arrested in Qatar and finally spent six months in Qatari jails. Amazingly, in Qatar, you only get six months for funding top Al-Qaeda operatives.

Khalifa al-Subaiy, just out of jail, immediately reconnected with al-Qaeda leaders. He notably linked up with operatives in Iran as of 2009 and sent cash to senior al-Qaeda leaders in Pakistan through 2013.

In addition to its support of terrorism, Qatar is accused of hosting the nefarious leader of the Muslim Brotherhood Yusuf Al Qaradawi, who notably said that it is not permissible for a woman to “travel alone to study in a Western country, or in any country, for that matter". He also believes that female rape victims should be punished if dressed "immodestly" when assaulted and supported suicide bombings against civilians in Israel.

The Trump administration is right to be tough with Qatar. Congress should follow.

The Wall Street Journal revealed that Khalifa al-Subaiy, a former Qatari central banker jailed for funding Al-Qaeda, was still able to withdraw $120,000 every year from his accounts at the Qatar National Bank. Al-Subaiy, though, has been listed by the Treasury Department as a terrorist financier since 2008. President Trump is right to push for a stronger anti-terror policy.

Qatar officially pretends it does not support terrorism. However, the Khalifa al-Subaiy story suggests that the small Persian Gulf state plays a crucial role in financing Islamic terrorism. Extremist groups such as the Taliban, some Al-Qaeda branches, and Muslim Brotherhood affiliated organizations are repeatedly accused of being funded by gas-rich Qatar.

Since 9/11, the U.S. make relentless efforts backed by United Nations Security Council resolutions to put an end to the financial support for terror. Neighboring Gulf countries and the U.S. repeatedly complain about Qatar's lack of UN sanctions enforcement. Qatar's commitment remains unclear and this new case makes the country's position even more delicate.

As a former head of Qatar's central bank, Khalifa al-Subaiy provided support to al-Qaeda heads including Khalid Sheikh Mohammed, the mastermind of the 9/11 attacks. Khalifa al-Subaiy was added to the United Nations terror blacklist in 2008. Although his assets were frozen, the WSL just revealed that al-Subaiy was allowed to withdraw up to $10,000 per month from his Qatar National Bank account to cover supposed "basic necessities." This allowance was authorized by Qatar, which subsequently evaded the UN freeze.

Even more disturbing than the lavish monthly withdrawal is the way the money was used. Indeed, the monthly $10,000 helped Khalifa al-Subaiy finance terrorist groups at least until 2013.

In addition to UN sanctions, al-Subaiy was condemned in 2008 in Bahrain on charges of financing and facilitating terrorism. Not showing up at his trial, he was eventually arrested in Qatar and finally spent six months in Qatari jails. Amazingly, in Qatar, you only get six months for funding top Al-Qaeda operatives.

Khalifa al-Subaiy, just out of jail, immediately reconnected with al-Qaeda leaders. He notably linked up with operatives in Iran as of 2009 and sent cash to senior al-Qaeda leaders in Pakistan through 2013.

In addition to its support of terrorism, Qatar is accused of hosting the nefarious leader of the Muslim Brotherhood Yusuf Al Qaradawi, who notably said that it is not permissible for a woman to “travel alone to study in a Western country, or in any country, for that matter". He also believes that female rape victims should be punished if dressed "immodestly" when assaulted and supported suicide bombings against civilians in Israel.

The Trump administration is right to be tough with Qatar. Congress should follow.