The Saudi Embassy in Washington has clarified misrepresentations concerning its efforts to track terrorist funds that appeared in the April 2 Los Angeles Times article “Saudi Arabia is prime source of terror funds, US says.”
In a letter to the editor published today, Director of the Saudi Arabian Information Office Nail Al-Jubeir took issue with the fact that he was misquoted in the article and that it mischaracterized an April 1 Senate Finance Committee hearing on antiterror financing.
As Mr. Al-Jubeir wrote in his letter:
This article ["Saudis faulted for funding terror," April 2, 2008] misrepresents what was discussed at the April 1 Senate Finance Committee hearing.
The Kingdom’s financial intelligence unit has been operational since Sept. 10, 2005, as confirmed by Daniel Glaser, deputy assistant secretary for terrorist financing and financial crimes at the US Treasury Department, in testimony before the Senate Judiciary Committee on Nov. 8, 2005.
Glaser said: “We are already actively engaged ... in Riyadh, where agents from IRS criminal investigation and FBI sit side by side with their Saudi counterparts to analyze important streams of data together.”
Also, until the Saudi National Commission for Relief and Charitable Work Abroad is fully operational, no charitable organization in Saudi Arabia is permitted to send funds abroad. The commission is being finalized and expected to be operational soon.