The Terrorist Financing Targeting Center (TFTC) launched its inaugural fellowship program in Washington D.C. on September 18-22, 2023. The program brings together 6 professionals from each member state to participate in a yearlong capacity-building and training fellowship on counterterrorism financing. The week began with opening remarks from U.S. Treasury Deputy Assistant Secretary Jesse Baker and the Head of Saudi Arabia’s Permanent Counterterrorism Center and TFTC Co-Chair General Yousef AlMohsen.
The fellows participated in over 14 presentations with more than 20 experts in this field throughout the U.S. government. The Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC), Office of Intelligence Analysis (OIA), Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), Treasury Executive Office for Asset Forfeiture (TEOAF), and Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigations (IRS-CI) provided individual trainings describing the Treasury designation, compliance, and investigative process. OFAC highlighted the information needed to create a designation package and the types of sanctions they implement. OIA presented on financial intelligence and its role in countering terrorist financing and sanctions designations. FinCEN outlined their roles and tools for safeguarding the financial system and supporting law enforcement investigation efforts. TEOAF explained the asset forfeiture process and highlighted a terrorist financing case study. IRS-CI provided background on the importance of international collaboration in combating financial crimes and their involvement in tracking illicit funds.
In addition to Treasury components, the Department of Justice provided a training on law enforcement activities and prosecutive authorities associated with terrorist financing. They also briefed on the Mutual Legal Assistance process. The Department of State presented on their role in building international support throughout sanctions implementation and how they coordinate with Treasury when designating entities. Closing remarks were provided by U.S. Treasury Under Secretary Brian Nelson.
This week provided fellows with an extensive knowledge of U.S. counter-terrorist financing activities. It emphasized the importance of collaboration throughout the U.S. government and international partners to ensure effective action. The week also included a round table for fellows to share their personal experiences, a red coat tour of the U.S. Capitol and an architectural tour of the Treasury building. TFTC looks forward to the next fellowship events and hopes this can be a model for future multi-lateral engagements.