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March 9, 2022 11:31 am
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British Lawmaker Questions Possible Hamas Financial Dealings with UK Companies

avatar by Akiva Van Koningsveld

Opinion

People hold Hamas flags as Palestinians gather after performing the last Friday of Ramadan to protest over the possible eviction of several Palestinian families from homes on land claimed by Jewish settlers in the Sheikh Jarrah neighbourhood, in Jerusalem’s Old City, May 7, 2021. REUTERS/Ammar Awad

After our organization launched a campaign to help expose business entities linked to Hamas, a British lawmaker has taken action. In a written question submitted to parliament, Labour peer Lord Foulkes of Cumnock requested that the Home Secretary comment specifically on new revelations about the UK-designated Palestinian terror group’s financial dealings.

Documents obtained by Western intelligence sources previously showed that Hamas — proscribed in its entirety as a terrorist group by the United Kingdom, the United States, the European Union, Canada, Israel, and Japan — holds interests in dozens of international companies, reportedly worth some $500 million.

In February, we amplified and expanded greatly on an Arabic exposé that suggested that Hamas’ financial portfolio had suffered a “severe blow” after a London-based institution, Lloyd’s of London, warned some of its members against doing any business with the terror group. This seems to have come in response to the UK’s blacklisting of Hamas in its entirety, whereas it had previously bifurcated between the Palestinian group’s “political” and “military” wings.

Lloyd’s reportedly informed companies of the risks associated with maintaining financial dealings with the Gaza Strip’s rulers. Unconfirmed research has found that “some of the cover companies that have worked for Hamas are traded on national stock exchanges.”

Despite the far-reaching implications of Lloyd’s letter, it was not made public. We reached out to the organization to request a copy of the document, but Lloyd’s press office replied that it was “unable to share the report.”

As outlined in our February 2 article, we believe that it is in the supreme interest of the public and governments worldwide to know what companies have been facilitating Hamas’ war crimes against Israelis and Palestinians alike, especially in light of the UK’s counterterrorism strategy that entails working together with the private sector to thwart terrorist activity.

Now, Lord Foulkes of Cumnock, a Labour peer, has formally submitted the following written question in parliament:

To ask Her Majesty’s Government what assessment they have made of the report by HonestReporting, Help Combat Hamas Terrorism, published on 2 February; and what assessment they have made of the warning within the report by Lloyd’s of London against its members doing business with Hamas.

The question must be answered by the UK Home Office by March 18, although an extension can be requested.

In the meantime, individuals can contact Lloyd’s of London to inquire about its Hamas report.

The author is a contributor to HonestReporting, a Jerusalem-based media watchdog with a focus on antisemitism and anti-Israel bias — where a version of this article first appeared.

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