MOGADISHU, July 23 (Xinhua) — Somalia has warned telecommunication and money remittance companies against facilitating transfer of money to fund terror activities in the Horn of Africa nation.
The country’s internal security Minister Mohamed Abukar Islow said in a decree issued on Saturday that the money transfer companies have been aiding the militant group Al-Shabaab by sending meant for the group. “The cabinet passed a resolution which outlaws telecommunication and money transfer companies from facilitating money transfer to Al-Shabaab. Banks and remittance companies are included in this category and are therefore warned against violating the resolution,” said Islow.
The announcement follows reports that Al-Shabaab has been imposing fines on traders in the country which are then transmitted through telecommunication and remittance companies. The government also warned traders against paying levies to Al-Shabaab, failure to which they will be prosecuted. “Anyone who gives money to Al-Shabaab in form of fines will be prosecuted and the government will not consider any excuse,” the resolution read. The National Intelligence Services Agency (NISA) chief Abdullahi Mohamed Ali Sanbaloolshe said the government would monitor transactions by telecommunication and remittance companies. Ali said they want the telecommunication sector, banks, money transfer agency not to provide service to them like savings, investments or funds transfer.”From now on there will be plans that will have close ties in regard to banking services like opening an account, withdrawal and no economic activity executed without government’s knowledge,” said Sanbalolshe.