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Thursday, September 16, 2010

State Department Cables On Muwafaq Foundation

In light of the court decision this week excusing Yasin Al-Qadi from a terrorism financing case filed by victims of the September 11 attacks, here are a few documents I recently received from the State Department regarding the Muwafaq Foundation, Al-Qadi's charity.

State Department Cable, 10/4/1993, "The Impact of [Government of Sudan] Propaganda"

This cable broadly discusses Sudan's aggressive program of Islamization, and the role of several NGOS including Muwafaq in a fleeting reference.

State Department Cable, 9/21/1994, "Anatomy of an Islamist NGO"

This is a detailed account of the Muwafaq Foundation, except that the State Department has redacted derogatory information about the charity citing a "national security" exemption to the Freedom of Information Act. It's not clear to me what could possibly be so important in a 1994 document that it justifies a total redaction of the section dealing with Muwafaq's questionable activities, but I hope to find out after my appeal. The unredacted portion is derived from a meeting between a State Department political officer in Khartoum and several members of Muwafaq's leadership.

The document notes Muwafaq has projects in Sudan, Somalia, Eritrea, Ethiopia, Pakistan, Afghanistan and Lebanon. It also notes that Muwafaq has "representatives" in the United States.

State Department Cable, 10/15/2001, Terrorist Fundraising E.O. -- Yassin Al-Qadi

Shortly after the U.S. Treasury Department designated Yasin Al-Qadi and the Muwafaq Foundation as terrorist financiers in 2001, Al-Qadi requested a meeting with the U.S. consul in Jeddah. This secret memo shows that the meeting was scheduled but does not reflect whether it took place or what was discussed.

State Department Cable, 8/22/2006, Saudi Terrorist Financier Yassin Qadi Claims Victory After Turks Release His Assets

The title of this cable from the U.S. Embassy in Riyadh is fairly descriptive. It describes Al-Qadi's successes in getting his name cleared in Turkey and elsewhere. The cable notes that "Qadi's public claim that the [Saudi government] supports his legal efforts is spurious; the [Saudi government] froze his assets in the Kingdom."

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INTELWIRE is a web site edited by J.M. Berger. a researcher, analyst and consultant covering extremism, with a special focus on extremist activities in the U.S. and extremist use of social media. He is a non-resident fellow with the Brookings Institution, Project on U.S. Relations with the Islamic World, and author of the critically acclaimed Jihad Joe: Americans Who Go to War in the Name of Islam, the only definitive history of the U.S. jihadist movement, and co-author of ISIS: The State of Terror with Jessica Stern.


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