The Jihadi Financial Unit (Unit 104)/ Bayt al-Mal/ the Islamic Resistance Support Association

*This article is part of a series of articles dealing with the structure of Hezbollah in general with the various councils and the executive council on its various civilian entities in particular (see the introduction here)

Ibrahim Ali Th’aher (Hajj Jihad) serves as head of Hezbollah’s jihadi financial unit (Unit 104) and is subject to sanctions. Th’aher was born on July 4, 1964, in the town of Blida in the Nabatiya governorate, southern Lebanon. He now lives in the Dahiyeh neighborhood, in the Haret Hreik area of southern Beirut.

Hezbollah’s financial unit oversees all of Hezbollah’s revenues and is responsible for managing and controlling the budget of all Hezbollah units, including coordinating salaries for all Hezbollah operatives. Th’aher has been considered a key figure in Hezbollah’s financial infrastructure for many years. The unit has two main bodies, Bayt al-Mal and the Islamic Resistance Support Authority.

Bayt al-Mal is not a public body. Bayt al-Mal operates as both an investment wing and as a loan bank. Bayt al-Mal serves as Hezbollah’s unofficial “treasury” it holds and invests in assets and actually serves as a financial mediation conduit between Hezbollah and formal banks. The person in charge of Bayt al-Mal is Haj Hossein al-Shami.

Bayt al-Mal’s branches are spread out in the Shiite areas of Lebanon, and its central headquarters are located in the Dahiyeh. Recently, US sanctions were imposed on Wahid Mahmoud Sabity, who is alleged to have served as a senior official in Bayt al-Mal.

The Islamic Resistance Support Association operates under Bayt al-Mal. Unlike Bayt al-Mal, the association is a public body and serves as Hezbollah’s fundraising wing (as a complement to Iran’s direct budget). The association was founded in 1989 and is under sanctions. The association is promoted regularly on Hezbollah’s Al-Manar TV. It offers a variety of ways to donate to Hezbollah: a monthly donation, a donation to the families of martyrs, a direct donation to the military operatives, a direct donation for weapons, etc.

The phone numbers of various association branches throughout Lebanon and not necessarily in Shiite areas are frequently publicized. There is a dedicated phone number for worldwide donations, including Western countries, where Shiite communities and Hezbollah supporters live. Seated accounts related to the association were opened at Byblos Bank, Lebanon- al Khaliji bank, and Jamal Trust Bank. Beyond that, it is known that funds are collected even in the simplest way: through physical charity boxes placed in various places.

The Director-General of the Islamic Resistance Support Association is Hossein al-Shami, and the details of the website on the Internet are:

Twitter and Facebook accounts were not found.

In the attached advertisement poster, you can see an advertisement in which it is proposed to contribute in favor of “preparing a holy warrior” by depositing into a specific account of al- Qard al-Hasan:

In May 2020, we published an article about the brothers Mahmoud and Yahya Murad. Both brothers run a company called “MoradCo.” Located in the al-Ghobeiry area of the southern suburb of Beirut – a stronghold of Hezbollah. “MoradCo.”  is a major player in the Lebanese money exchange market. The Lebanese money exchange market is a fertile ground for Hezbollah for illicit financial activity and a conduit for money laundering and terrorist financing. Yehya Morad is a well-known Hezbollah operative in Hezbollah’s jihadi financial unit (Unit 104) and is the brother of the chairman of the Lebanese Exchange Association, Mahmoud Murad.

Hezbollah manages most of its currency transactions with “MoradCo.”. Many Hezbollah operatives turn to “MoradCo.” to convert their dollars into Lebanese pounds. Hezbollah’s financial bodies (and the social entities with a financial interface, such as the al- Qard al-Hasan Society) maintain close ties with the “MoradCo.” Company.

In his May 04, 2021 speech, Hezbollah Secretary-General Hassan Nasrallah noted that Hezbollah was not operating and was not affiliated with the money exchange market in Lebanon. Nasrallah’s denial follows widespread public criticism that the Lebanese exchange market is one of the main causes of Lebanon’s precarious economic situation. The direct and deep connection between Hezbollah’s financial unit and financial institutions and “MoradCo, ” which deals in the money exchange market and belongs to a Hezbollah operative, completely contradicts Nasrallah’s above statement.

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Tal Beeri

Tal Beeri

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