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Australian and Indonesian Government Collaborating to Fight Terrorism Funding

>> Feb 24, 2017

One of the biggest news that circulated the media since February 2, 2017 was the joining of hand between Australia and Indonesia to cut the flow of funding used for terrorism purposes. “Both the countries pledged that they will work in unison to stem the flow of funding”, said the chief security minister of Indonesia Wiranto,  after a detailed meeting in Canberra with his Australian counterparts.
In 2014-2015, Indonesia detected multiple overseas funds transfers that were purportedly linked to terrorism. These overseas funds amounted to approximately $1 million. 60% of the amount originated from Australia, under the fake guise of charities transferred by terrorism supporters, as reported by PPATK, the anti-money laundering agency in Indonesia.

In the meeting, Indonesia's Coordinating Minister for Political, Legal and Security Affairs, speaking about the money trial from Australia, said that it wasn’t hard to detect these transfers made. He further elaborated the reason for the meeting, saying that Indonesia wanted to join hands with the Australian government to curb the slow of such funding.

"The terrorism funding may flow from anywhere, so we don't want to be trapped in a blame game, making accusations about where the funds came from, we must have a common understanding about the importance of working together to combat these flows of funds," he added.

The funds transferred were invested in Indonesian businesses. According to PPATK’s report, the militant groups invested in local businesses, formed partnerships, and helped them grow. Once they started gaining profits, the groups used the money to fund terrorist activities.

Mr. Wiranto, after the 3rd Indonesia-Australia Ministerial Council Meeting on Law and Security, told the reporters that it was impossible for terrorists to carry out an act of terrorism without proper funding, if we succeed in cutting that funding, we may very well be able to put an end to terrorism on a larger scale.

"Our two countries will continue to develop a common understanding on how to locate sources of terrorist fundings. We have reached agreements on this front, and with current technology, both countries have also successfully managed to block numerous terrorist funding attempts," he remarked.

George Brandis, Australia's Attorney-General, agreed with Mr. Wiranto, saying that it was an important issue between the two nations as it affected both on a similar level.  "We know one of the most effective ways to combat the scourge of terrorism is to attack the funding. One of the most important items on the agenda of this council today is the ongoing work between agencies and officials in working together to choke the flow of funding of terrorist organisations," he added.

During the meeting issues like cyber-crime, counter terrorism, illegal immigrants, and maritime security were also discussed in detail. Both representatives from the two countries aimed to strengthen cooperation on in law sector.

Another pact that was inked between Austrac and PPATK, and they formalized the cooperation between the two countries to fight money laundering, and exchange intelligence with each other for a coordinated effort against money laundering.

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