**TFI to Fight The Financial War on Terror**
The US Treasury announced today that the Administration has created an Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence (TFI). TFI will lead Treasury’s efforts to cut the lines of financial support to international terrorists, a critical component of the Administration’s overall effort to keep America safe from terrorist plots. TFI will be led by a new Under Secretary – one of only three in the Treasury department – and two Assistant Secretaries.
*”As President Bush has said, there is no greater responsibility than protecting the American people from terrorism. Treasury’s Office of Terrorism and Financial Intelligence will enhance the precision of our relentless fight to dismantle the terrorists’ network of financial and logistical support and disrupt their plans to harm America and all other nations that value liberty and freedom,”* said Secretary of the Treasury John W. Snow.
As part of the restructuring of Treasury’s authorities and resources, the Executive Office of Terrorist Financing and Financial Crimes, the Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN), and the Office of Foreign Assets Control, as well as reallocated resources from within the Treasury Department, will be brought under the leadership of TFI. The new office will not only focus on the financial war on terror, but also protect the integrity of the financial system, fight financial crime, enforce economic sanctions against rogue nations and assist in the ongoing hunt for Iraqi assets.
According to today’s release, TFI will redouble Treasury’s efforts in specific ways:
**Targeted Intelligence Analysis**. The combined use of intelligence and financial data is the best way to detect how terrorists are exploiting the financial system and to design methods to stop them. By coordinating Treasury’s intelligence functions and capabilities, TFI will benefit from enhanced analytical capabilities, as well as additional expertise and technology.
**Aggressive Enforcement**. The passage of the USA PATRIOT Act in 2001 gave the Treasury Department important new tools to detect and prevent the abuse of our financial system by terrorists and other criminals. TFI will coordinate Treasury’s aggressive effort to enforce these regulations.
**Unprecedented International Coordination**. We have forged a strong international coalition to combat terrorist financing. The ongoing, cooperative efforts between the U.S. and our international partners are at unprecedented levels. The unified structure will promote a robust international engagement and allow us to intensify outreach to our counterparts in other countries.
**Accountability**. Having a single office is the best way to ensure accountability and achieve results for this essential mission.
The Treasury Department has played an important role in preventing the spread of terrorism around the world. It has facilitated the creation of a worldwide network of laws, institutions and information-sharing to help prevent the use of the financial system by terrorists and money launderers.
To date, 351 individuals and entities have been designated under President Bush’s Executive Order aimed at freezing the assets of terrorists and their supporters, with approximately $200 million in terrorist-related assets frozen or seized.
The new positions announced today are presidential appointments and will require Senate confirmation.