Iraq convicts Arab-American of terror funding

October 11, 2012

Omar Rashad Khalil, a Muslim Palestinian Arab who acquired U.S. citizenship, has confessed to helping finance terrorist activities in Iraq.  Khalil is said to have received money from an unnamed Syrian while both men were in the U.A.E.—a well-known hub for money laundering and terror financial transactions.

An engineer, Khalil probably brought skills that would have been helpful to Al Qaeda in Iraq in their attacks against the government of Iraq, its security forces, and U.S. and coalition soldiers.  From AP via ABC News:

An Iraqi court has sentenced an American citizen to life in prison on charges of assisting al-Qaida and financing terrorist activities in Iraq, according to a government statement released Thursday.

The Interior Ministry said Omar Rashad Khalil, 53, was recruited by al-Qaida in Iraq in 2005. Khalil, an architectural engineer, is of Palestinian descent and entered the country in 2001, the ministry statement said.

The ministry released excerpts from a confession it said Khalil made in which he allegedly admitted to receiving money from a Syrian man in the United Arab Emirates to pay for terror attacks.

Khalil, who the ministry said was also known as Abu Mohammed, was sentenced by Baghdad’s central criminal court on Wednesday. Iraqi government officials could not immediately be reached for more details.

U.S. embassy spokesman Frank Finver issued a statement saying that the embassy officials were aware of the reports…

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