Gaza Banks Robbed by Armed Groups – Liberation

War between Hamas and Israelcase

According to Le Monde, several Palestinian armed groups, including Hamas, robbed banks in Gaza in April and stole 66 million euros. The Israeli military also reportedly seized the funds.

Since early April, several bank branches in Gaza City have been the target of spectacular looting, destroyed by Israeli army bombardment and largely vacated by its population. the world We were able to obtain a document from the Bank of Palestine from April 20, which reveals the scale of these thefts.

The Bank of Palestine is a private financial institution, the largest in the Palestinian territories, founded in Gaza in the 1960s and still managed by a large family from the enclave of Shawa. On April 16, bank employees noticed a hole drilled in the ceiling of the bank’s vault, located in the heart of the Rimal district, a wealthy corner of the enclave. The armed group took the ATM cassettes, which contained about 2.8 million euros in Israeli shekels. But the convicts could not open the vault.

The bank then poured cement over the treasury, which contained substantial cash reserves, to prevent the bandits from returning. But on April 17, “Armed Groups” According to reports, the attackers detonated a cement box armed with explosives and opened three safes, stealing 29 million euros in different currencies. the world

Critical funds

On April 18, bank employees rushed to the largest second branch in the city center, where they managed to withdraw the large amount of funds still stored. An armed commando was waiting for them “of the highest authorities of Gaza”, A formula referring to Hamas reveals a document retrieved daily. Threatening employees, shooting, the criminals got away with 33.6 million euros in Israeli shekels this time. A bank employee has been hospitalized due to a heart attack.

See also  Johnny Depp: Alcohol, drugs, his doctor swinging over his "substance abuse"

The bank revealed that the previous robbery took place on the night of April 7 at a branch on Omar Al-Mokhtar Street. Robbery for criminals: 3.7 million euros in different currencies. In one month, the bank estimated its losses at 66 million euros and all its other coffers have been stabilized.

According to world, Palestine’s bank has also been targeted by the Israeli military, which reportedly seized a large amount worth tens of millions of dollars, according to Israeli media, to prevent a Hamas takeover earlier this year. It is.

Most of the existing banks in Gaza suffered intrusions during the war: attempted thefts from deserted counters, ATM drilling, etc. On April 22, the Palestinian Monetary Authority lamented “Continued attacks on bank branches and ATMs threaten the continued operation of these branches and their ability to pay staff salaries and disburse funds to their owners.” She called the representatives “Community forces and tribal agencies in the Gaza Strip must provide security for their assets” reports the world

Obstructive trend

Eager to reassure depositors, the Monetary Authority notes that only 8.4% of Palestinian bank funds were held in Gaza before the war. According to a French diplomat, the Bank of Palestine is supported by several states and international institutions – Praberco, a subsidiary of the French Development Agency, has been a minor shareholder of the bank since 2021. He recalled. “That the fundamentals of the bank are sound and that France will continue to support it and the Palestinian banking system in general.”

Since the start of the war in Gaza, Palestinian banks have tried to protect their finances. In November 2023, the Bank of Palestine took advantage of a brief ceasefire to take part of its funds stored in two branches in Gaza City – the equivalent of 45 million euros in Israeli shekels – and cleverly move them south of the enclave. This function is expressed by Financial Times In December 2023, confirmed the world by Palestinian and international sources.

See also  Biden warns of Russian cyber attacks in US

Today, getting paid is a hurdle for Gazans. All bank offices in Palestine are closed. In Rafah and Deir al-Balah (south), only two ATMs are still operational while electricity is supplied. According to the testimonies of the Gazans, confirmed by surveillance camera recordings, armed and masked men in front of ATMs demand a percentage of the ransom from customers. In exchange for a few tickets, they stand in line for hours to give up their seats as soon as they get close to these machines.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *