Breaking news: US points out a South Africa-based Tanzanian Peter Charles Mbaga as financial facilitator of violent extremism in Mozambique
Peter Charles Mbaga is a Tanzanian national based in South Africa described by the U.S. Treasury Department as having ties to ISIS-Mozambique. Mbaga facilitated fund transfers from South Africa and sought to provide support to ISIS-Mozambique by helping the group purchase equipment on the South African
market. The Treasury Department further states that Mbaga sought to purchase weapons in Mozambique.
The US Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) on
Tuesday, 01 March designated four (4) financial facilitators of the Islamic State
of Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and ISIS-Mozambique (ISIS-M) based in South Africa.
According to a statement from the US Treasury Department, ISIS members and associates in South Africa are playing an increasingly central role in facilitating
the transfer of funds from the top of the ISIS hierarchy to affiliates across Africa.
ISIS members based in South Africa have provided support for the money transfers or served as leaders of ISIS cells in South Africa. “Treasury is taking this action to disrupt and expose key ISIS supporters who exploit South Africa’s financial system to facilitate the funding of ISIS affiliates and networks
across Africa,” said US Treasury under Secretary Brian E. Nelson.
The Treasury Department statement notes that the United States is working with African partners, including South Africa, to dismantle ISIS’ financial support networks on the continent. “Recently, ISIS has attempted to expand its influence in Africa through largescale operations in areas where government
control is limited. ISIS affiliates in Africa rely on local fundraising schemes, such as theft, extortion of local populations and kidnapping for ransom, as well as financial support from the ISIS hierarchy,” the statement read.
Farhad Hoomer (also known as Farhad Omar; Farhaad Umar; Farhad Umar) is a South African national with residence in Kwazulu Natal province, described as being the leader of the Islamic State of Iraq and Syria cell in
Durban. In 2017 and 2018, Farhad Hoomer helped organize and start operations of an ISIS cell in Durban, South Africa.
He provided some of his known residences and vehicles registered in his name to
sponsor the meetings and operational activities of the Durban-based ISIS cell. “Hoomer claimed to have recruited and trained cell members and was in contact with members of ISIS-Democratic Republic of Congo (ISISRDC) and ISIS supporters across South Africa.” The Treasury Department says that Hoomer
obtained funds through kidnapping operations and demanding ransom money
from victims, as well as extortion from large companies, which provided more than one million South African rand in revenue to the Durban ISIS cell. “In 2018, South African authorities arrested Hoomer with his associates for involvement in a plan to deploy improvised incendiary devices near a mosque and commercial and retail buildings.”
Siraaj Miller, a South African citizen based Siraaj Miller, a South African citizen based in Cape Town, is described as the leader of a group of ISIS supporters in that city. Miller provided financial assistance to ISIS and trained members to carry out robberies to raise funds for the terrorist organization. In 2018, Miller also assisted in the purchase of temporary safe houses for ISIS.
Abdella Hussein Abadigga ( also known as Abdella Asid Abadigga; Abdallah Asid Abadika; Abdallah Usseni; Abu Hamza; Abdi Carlos), an Ethiopian refugee based in Johannesburg, recruited youths in South Africa and sent them to a training camp. Abadigga controlled two mosques in South Africa and used his position
to extort money from members. Using the “hawala” platform, he sent money
to ISIS supporters in other parts of Africa. Bilal al-Sudani, a US-designated ISIS leader in Somalia, considered Abadigga a reliable man who could help ISIS supporters in South Africa to organize themselves better and recruit
Peter Charles Mbaga is a Tanzanian based in South Africa and the only one with a connection to ISIS-Mozambique. Mbaga facilitated fund transfers from South Africa and sought to provide support to ISIS-Mozambique by helping the group purchase equipment on the South African market. The Treasury Department further states that Mbaga sought to purchase weapons in Mozambique.
As a result of yesterday’s action, all assets and interests in property of persons designated as financial facilitators of violent extremism and any entities that are owned, directly or indirectly, 50% or more by them, individually or with other blocked persons, that are in the United States or in the possession or control of U.S. persons, must be blocked and reported to the Treasury Department.
Unless authorized by a general or specific license issued by the Treasury Department, its regulations generally prohibit all transactions by U.S. citizens or persons who are in the United States (including transactions in transit through the United States) involving any property or interests in property of designated
or blocked persons. The prohibitions include making or receiving any contribution
of funds, goods or services to or for the benefit of such persons. In addition, engaging in certain transactions with designated individuals carries the risk of secondary sanctions.