Multi-Agency Workshop on Investigating Cases of Terrorism Financing

8-9 August 2019, Karachi. The United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) and the European Union (EU) recognize the efforts made by the Government of Pakistan in combatting the challenges of terrorism. UNODC Country Office Pakistan; PACT Project, in collaboration with NACTA and INTERPOL, organized a Multi-Agency Workshop on Investigating Cases of Terrorism Financing on 8-9 August 2019 in Karachi. The workshop was aimed at helping participants understand the significance of Financial Investigations in Counter Terrorism cases, and to equip them with knowledge on the processes and sources of Terrorist Financing. In total 25 participants from the Counter Terrorism Departments (CTDs) of Balochistan and Sindh attended.

  Mr Philip Divett, Programme Officer Terrorism Prevention Branch, UNODC Vienna,   formally opened the workshop by welcoming the participants and introducing the agenda outlined for the event. In continuation with his presentation on 'Emerging Threats of Terrorist Financing, Mr. Divett talked upon Terrorist Financing and its sources and typologies; and challenges and approaches for the Financial Management Unit (FMU)' wherein the complete process and stages of Terrorist Financing, and  the traditional and modern tools that facilitate TF, were discussed. 

Mr Hyung Keun Hoon, Criminal Intelligence Officer INTERPOL, on 'The Role of INTERPOL in TF Investigations', gave the second presentation. He explained the agency's role in assisting financial investigators in terrorism enquiries. Next Mr Keith Verralls highlighted the significance of financial investigation in terrorism enquiries, wherein he discussed several case studies with the participants. He also explained the importance and role of Financial Investigation within Counter Terrorism Investigations. The day concluded with Mr Keun's session elaborating the measures which must be adopted to combat the smuggling of cash across borders.

On the second day Mr Kamran Taj, Director CT Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), presented the obligations of Pakistan under the UNSC 1267 Sanctions . He explained in depth the UNSC legal framework; and elaborated upon the role of provincial authorities in Pakistan, inclusive of the Home Departments, Land Revenue Authorities, Excise Departments, Deputy Commissioners, and District Intelligence Committees, in light of the guidelines developed by MOFA. He also briefed the participants on the types of funds, and of financial and economic resources, that can be used as tools for financing terrorism. His presentation was concluded by highlighting measures needed to be taken in order to freeze and seize assets being used to facilitate TF. Following this, the participants were divided into groups for a scenario-based exercise on Cash Smuggling. 

After the deliberations and information obtained during the workshop, the participants shared their perspectives on mechanisms and methods that can be adopted for investigations; and presented their analyses on given scenarios as part of their group exercises. Subsequently, a question-answer session took place to facilitate participants' queries.

On conclusion of the workshop, the participants expressed their appreciation of the UNODC's efforts in organizing such opportunities through which they were able to learn and improve their skills. They lauded as particularly valuable the incorporation of group exercises on the subject of Cash Smuggling. Participants were awarded certificates at the event's closing.