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U.S. sanctions NGO for funding Indonesian terrorist group

The Treasury under Secretary Janet Yellen on Thursday sanctioned World Human Care for funding Majelis Mujahidin Indonesia, which the United States designated in 2017. File Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | <a href="/News_Photos/lp/e57575c0917f718681f716f2f99b7bb4/" target="_blank">License Photo</a>
The Treasury under Secretary Janet Yellen on Thursday sanctioned World Human Care for funding Majelis Mujahidin Indonesia, which the United States designated in 2017. File Photo by Sarah Silbiger/UPI | License Photo

Feb. 4 (UPI) -- The Biden administration has targeted a non-governmental organization with sanctions on accusations of providing support to an Indonesia-based terrorist organization.

The Treasury sanctioned the World Human Care on Thursday, stating the NGO was founded by the U.S. designated terrorist group Majelis Mujahidin Indonesia to support its extremists activities in Syria under the guise of humanitarian work.

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"The United States is taking this action to expose and disrupt MMI's deceptive efforts to use a purported 'humanitarian organization' for illicit purposes as a front for collecting and transferring funds," Brian E. Nelson, under secretary of the Treasury for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence, said in a statement.

The sanctions imposed against World Human Care freeze all of its property and interests in property while barring U.S. citizens from doing business with the entity. The move also arms the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control to punish those who knowingly conduct transactions on its behalf.

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World Human Care has been accused by the Biden administration of being used as a front company to raise funds to support the MMI.

The Treasury said the NGO hosts events near Indonesia's capital of Jakarta to raise funds to be transferred to al-Qaeda-linked terrorists. As proof, the federal department said World Human Care advertised on its website for money to be sent to a bank account tied to an MMI official.

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In early 2016, World Human Care also sent money to Syria for humanitarian assistance as well as for weapons and fighters, including to an unnamed Southeast Asian foreign terrorist, the Treasury said.

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"While World Human Care has engaged in some legitimate humanitarian activities, the main objective of the organization was to serve as a cover to raise funds for MMI sympathizers in Syria," the Treasury said.

The MMI was designated by the U.S. State Department on June 12, 2017, in connection to acts of terrorism that threatened the United States.

"The vast majority of humanitarian aid providers are legitimate and often heroic organizations providing essential, life-saving humanitarian assistance in Syria and elsewhere," State Department spokesman Ned Price said in a statement. "Unfortunately, World Human Care's actions are deplorable not only for their support for terrorist organizations but also because they undermine the work and reputation of genuine humanitarian aid providers worldwide."

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