Somalia: Al-Shabaab militants transfer funds using the mobile money system operated by mobile network Hormuud Telecom - $10 million a year

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Sunday October 20, 2019 - 19:03:15 in News In English by Super Admin
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    Somalia: Al-Shabaab militants transfer funds using the mobile money system operated by mobile network Hormuud Telecom - $10 million a year

    Al-Shabab in Somalia run a tax system Via Hormuud Telecom - UN Report ? Report says Al Shabab militants run tax system to rival Somalia's federal government

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Al-Shabab in Somalia run a tax system Via Hormuud Telecom - UN Report ? Report says Al Shabab militants run tax system to rival Somalia's federal government

Al-Shabab militants in Somalia run a tax system that rivals the federal government in sophistication, according to UN sanctions monitors, with taxation from illicitly exported charcoal and other tolls netting the group tens of millions in revenue annually.

In an unpublished annual report to the UN Security Council seen by Reuters, the monitors add that domestic revenue generation by Al Qaeda-affiliated Al Shabab "is more geographically diversified and systematic" than that of Somalia's federal government.

Due to the militants' provision of receipts, the taxation system is "accountable and predictable", in contrast to the network of checkpoints manned by the government's armed forces in some parts of the country.

Despite controlling far less territory than it did at the height of a decade-long insurgency, "the group's "ability to carry out complex asymmetric attacks in Somalia remains undiminished", the monitors wrote.

Al Shabab's most lucrative checkpoint is about 160 km north-west of the capital Mogadishu on the road to Baidoa, the monitors said, citing an Al Shabab defector who reported that the location earns the group approximately $30,000 per day – $10 million a year.

"Employing mafia-style tactics, the group is able to levy taxation via a network of hinterland checkpoints, with collection of taxes enforced through violence and intimidation," said the monitors, adding that truck drivers risked execution if they tried to avoid checkpoints.

Earlier this year the monitors obtained ledgers belonging to Al Shabab that were recovered after one of the group's senior accountants was killed in an attack by the Somali National Army and African Union peacekeepers.

They wrote that the ledgers detail Al Shabab's revenue and expenses in one region, Hiiraan, in central Somalia, from October 2014 to March 2018 and "display a sophisticated accounting system" in which the militants transfer funds using the mobile money system operated by mobile network Hormuud Telecom.


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