Russian President Vladimir Putin yesterday dropped a bombshell when he alleged that the dreaded Islamic State (ISIS) is being funded by 40 countries including some members of the G20 countries.
Putin who spoke at the ongoing G20 meeting in Turkey said he had shared intelligence with the other G20 member states, which reveals that ISIS finances the majority of its terrorist activities with support from these countries and that, surprisingly, the countries include a number of G20 countries.
He said, “I provided examples based on our data on the financing of different Islamic State (IS, formerly ISIS/ISIL) units by private individuals. This money, as we have established, comes from 40 countries and there are some of the G20 members among them.”
In addition to discussing the need to stop the flow of donor money to ISIS, Putin also reiterated the need to stop the illegal oil trade by ISIS.
“I’ve shown our colleagues photos taken from space and from aircraft which clearly demonstrate the scale of the illegal trade in oil and petroleum products. The motorcade of refuelling vehicles stretched for dozens of kilometres, so that from a height of 4,000 to 5,000 metres they stretch beyond the horizon,” Putin added.
The Islamic State makes about $50 million a month from selling crude from captured oilfields in Iraq and Syria, according to Iraqi intelligence and U.S. officials.
A report by Business Insider said: “Oil sales — the extremists’ largest single source of continual income — are a key reason they have been able to maintain their rule over their self-declared “caliphate” stretching across large parts of Syria and Iraq.
“With the funds to rebuild infrastructure and provide the largesse that shore up its fighters’ loyalty, it has been able to withstand ground fighting against its opponents and more than a year of bombardment in the U.S.-led air campaign.”
Putin, who also addressed the press at the conference, went on to stress that an international coalition was needed to more effectively counter the terrorist group, noting Russia’s readiness to support the fight against ISIS.
“Some armed opposition groups consider it possible to begin active operations against IS with Russia’s support. And we are ready to provide such support from the air. If it happens it could become a good basis for the subsequent work on a political settlement,” Putin said.
“We really need support from the US, European nations, Saudi Arabia, Turkey, Iran,” the Russian president added.
Reports suggest that the Russian intelligence analysis of the 40 nations funding the ISIS terror machine were relayed to diplomats attending the G20 summit – but were not released to the media, nor the general public.
“We will keep you updated if/when the names of the ISIS supporting states are leaked,” Putin said.
Members of the G20 group of advanced countries are gathered at Antalya, Turkey, in the wake of the recent terrorist attacks in Paris, France, which claimed more than 129 lives, with over 300 injured.
ISIS has claimed responsibility for the attacks.