Assistant Secretary for Terrorist Financing
US Department of the Treasury
Hizballah is one of the most sophisticated terrorist organizations in the world and a primary destabilizing actor in the Middle East. Iran is Hizballah’s primary patron, and historically has provided the terrorist group upwards of $700 million annually. This has advanced the twin Iranian agendas of paralyzing Lebanon’s democracy and challenging the role of the Lebanese Armed Forces (LAF) in safeguarding the country’s security. In addition to funding from Tehran, Hezbollah has built its own worldwide network of financiers, front companies, and operatives that facilitate the procurement of weapons, dual-use goods, and counterfeiting currency for its terrorist activities in the region and beyond. Moreover, some senior Hizballah members have facilitated and engaged directly in illicit activities, including narcotics trafficking and the sex trade.
But under the Trump Administration, the US Department of the Treasury has restored the maximum pressure campaign on Iran and has targeted Hizballah’s global business network. Hizballah is currently experiencing significant financial difficulties as a result. Assistant Secretary of the US Treasury for Terrorist Financing Marshall Billingslea will discuss the latest efforts to counter Iranian illicit financial networks and Hizballah in the Levant, Gulf, and Latin America. His remarks will focus on the balance between supporting key partners while relentlessly rooting out Hizballah’s abuse of the regional and international financial systems.