Dutch arrest two for sending millions to Hamas

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Dutch investigators arrested a father and daughter for allegedly sending over five million euros ($5.4 million) to the Palestinian Islamist group Hamas in breach of EU sanctions, prosecutors said Monday.

The man, 55, and his daughter, 25, both from the town of Leidschendam near The Hague, were arrested on June 22 on suspicion of “large-scale financing” of Hamas, said the public prosecution service.

Investigators found cash during searches of a house in Leidschendam and a business in Rotterdam, and seized a bank balance of around 750,000 euros, they said.

“The public prosecution service suspects them of having sent money, approximately 5.5 million euros, to groups related to the organisation Hamas“, the prosecution service said.

“They are also suspected of participating in a criminal organisation whose purpose is to support Hamas financially.”

The pair, who remain in custody, were allegedly involved in a foundation that replaced an earlier, sanctioned organisation which sent funds to Hamas, prosecutors said.

The probe was launched after reports of unusual transactions, and after newspaper articles about a fundraising event in Europe for Hamas, it added.

Hamas, which controls the Gaza strip, was placed on an EU terrorism blacklist after the September 11, 2001 Al-Qaeda terror attacks on New York and Washington.

A lower EU court removed Hamas from the list in 2014, but the bloc’s top court reinstated it in 2017.

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Agence France-Presse (AFP) is a French international news agency headquartered in Paris, France. Founded in 1835 as Havas, it is the world's oldest news agency.

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