The Center on Global Counterterrorism Cooperation issued in February 2012 a discussion paper in Nairobi, Kenya, titled "Regional Working Group Meeting on Preventing Abuse of the Non-profit Sector for the Purposes of Terrorist Financing." The focus of the paper is the three countries in East Africa and Somalia. The goal of the paper is to protect non-profit organizations (NPOs) from abuse by terrorists while preserving the good work that they provide. The Center is a nonprofit, nonpartisan policy institute dedicated to strengthening international counterterrorism cooperation.
In East Africa, the Center identified four key factors that have shaped the discussion about the regulation of NPOs in light of their vulnerability to terrorist abuse:
--First, the threat of terrorism in the sub-region is significant and emanates principally from Somali-based al-Shabaab.
--Second, al-Shabaab uses Somalia as a base for a small financial empire based on extortion and environmentally rapacious charcoal exports.
--Third, many states in the region face significant constraints in terms of their capacity to implement measures to regulate NPOs in an appropriate manner.
--Fourth, within the sub-region the issue of countering terrorist financing through the non-profit sector arises in the context of the broader relationship between the state and NPOs.
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