US, India natural allies against terror financing: US official

July 28th, 2011 - 12:25 am ICT by IANS  

Taliban Mumbai, July 27 (IANS) The US and India are natural allies in the fight against illicit finance used to fund terror activities, said a US official here Wednesday.

“Put at the disposal of groups espousing violent ideologies, these illicit finances can lead to deadly and tragic outcomes. It is the joint recognition of this fact that makes US and India natural allies,” Assistant Secretary of Treasury (Terrorist Financing) Daniel Glaser said.

He was addressing the concluding session of a two-day seminar jointly organised by the Confederation of Indian Industries (CII) and US-India Business Council (USIBC).

Stating that India is pioneering this approach with what are known as “small accounts”, Glaser said this type of account has caps on overall value, frequency of use, and size of transactions.

“Financial institutions still need to monitor low-risk accounts, but less frequently and less intensely than with higher-risk accounts. This allows a more efficient allocation of resources, since financial institutions focus their compliance resources on higher risk threats,” he said.

Glaser said that while they recognise advances in anti-money laundering implementation, they also need to recognise that money laundering and terrorist financing methods are always evolving.

“As we are all constantly reminded, we live in a global economy in which opportunities for economic growth are inevitably tied to greater integration with regional neighbors and far-flung trading partners,” Glaser said.

“This is certainly the case with the US and India. That is why I am also meeting with Indian government officials in Mumbai and New Delhi this week to promote increased US-India cooperation on combating terrorist financing, including through increased information sharing with respect to Lashkar-e-Taiba (LT), Al Qaeda, the Taliban and other groups that endanger both India and the US,” he added.

Glaser said that cooperation on combating terrorism - including terrorist financing networks - is a critical part of the US-India relationship. “As such, the US-India financial sector partnership has never been more important,” he said.

“Tragically, the July 13 terrorist bombings in this city again make crystal clear that terrorism and terrorist financing remain an immediate threat to India, the US, and the entire world,” he added.

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