Fetterman goes to Israel, says illegal financing “fans the flames of the Israel-Hamas war”

02 July 2024- Senator John Fetterman recently returned from Israel where he met with American and Israeli leadership to discuss the ongoing war between Israel and Hamas. Senator Fetterman serves on the U.S. Senate Banking Committee and the trip was focused on terror financing and combating illicit finance.

“Illicit finance fans the flames of the Israel-Hamas war,” said Senator Fetterman. “What’s clearer than ever is that we have an opportunity to help Israel win this war in several ways, not just by our military and financial aid, but by strengthening existing regulatory tools. Whether it’s making sure the Treasury Department has the necessary funding and tools or strengthening enforcement of existing sanctions, we have to do more to take on terror financing.”

Among other meetings and events, Senator Fetterman met with:

  • U.S. Ambassador to Israel Jack Lew
  • President Herzog and Ambassador Jack Lew
  • Prime Minister Netanyahu and Ambassador Jack Lew
  • Minister of Foreign Affairs Israel Katz
  • Brief with Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Prohibition Authority at the Ministry of Justice and National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing at the Ministry of Defense
  • Yair Lapid, Leader of the Opposition
  • Yair Golan, Chair of the Israeli Labor Party
  • Benny Gantz, Leader, National Unity Party

In his briefing with Israeli Ministry of Justice’s Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing Prohibition Authority and Ministry of Defense’s National Bureau for Counter Terror Financing (NBCTF), Fetterman discussed already introduced and potential future legislation focused on charities, shell companies, financial layering, exchange houses, virtual currencies, and their role in financing terror.

Senator Fetterman is a cosponsor of the Digital Asset Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2023, which was introduced by Senators Warren, Marshall, Manchin, and Graham. The Digital Asset Anti-Money Laundering Act of 2023 would address illicit finance risks posed by crypto by closing loopholes and bringing the digital asset ecosystem into compliance with the anti-money laundering and countering the financing of terrorism.

Senator Fetterman has also spoken about crypto’s role in funding Hamas at a Banking Committee Hearing in October 2023.