Islamic State 'hit by cash crisis in its capital Raqqa' | World Defense

Islamic State 'hit by cash crisis in its capital Raqqa'

Redheart

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Islamic State 'hit by cash crisis in its capital Raqqa' - Telegraph

Faced with a cash shortage in its self-declared caliphate, the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant has slashed salaries, asked Raqqa residents to pay utility bills in black market American dollars, and is now releasing detainees for a price of $500 a person.

The extremists who once bragged about minting their own currency are having a hard time meeting expenses, thanks to coalition airstrikes and other measures that have eroded millions from their finances since last fall. Having built up loyalty among militants with good salaries and honeymoon and baby bonuses, the group has stopped providing even the smaller perks: free energy drinks and Snickers bars.

There are shortages of necessities and inflation in its urban centers, according to exiles and those still suffering under its rule. Interviews gathered over several weeks included three exiles with networks of family and acquaintances still in the group's Syrian stronghold in Raqqa, residents in Mosul, and analysts who say Isil is turning to alternative funding streams, including in Libya.

In Raqqa, salaries have been halved since December, electricity is rationed, and prices for basics are spiralling out of reach, according to people exiled from the city.

"Not just the militants. Any civil servant, from the courts to the schools, they cut their salary by 50 per cent," said an activist now living in the Turkish city of Gaziantep, who remains in close contact with his native city. But that apparently wasn't enough to close the gap for a group that needs money to replace weapons lost in airstrikes and battles, and pays its fighters first and foremost. Those two expenses account for two-thirds of its budget, according to an estimate by Aymenn Jawad al-Tamimi, a researcher with the Middle East Forum who tracks down Isil documents.

Within the last two weeks, the extremist group started accepting only dollars for "tax" payments, water and electric bills, according to the Raqqa activist, who asked to be identified by his nom de guerre Abu Ahmad for his safety. "Everything is paid in dollars," he said. His account was bolstered by another ex-Raqqa resident, who, like Ahmad, also relies on communications with a network of family and acquaintances still in the city.

Mr al-Tamimi came across a directive announcing the fighters' salary cuts in Raqqa: "On account of the exceptional circumstances the Islamic State is facing, it has been decided to reduce the salaries that are paid to all Mujahideen by half, and it is not allowed for anyone to be exempted from this decision, whatever his position."

Those circumstances include the dramatic drop in global prices for oil - once a key source of income - airstrikes that have targeted cash stores and oil infrastructure, supply line cuts, and crucially, the Iraqi government's decision to stop paying civil servants in territory controlled by the extremists.
 

Corzhens

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Pardon me if you are pro-ISIS but this is good news for the rest of the world. We have a saying that a hungry soldier cannot find. In the Southern Philippines, there was a time when the rebels resorted to kidnapping for ransom to augment their funds and eventually that rebel group had to fold up due to lack of resources. With the shortage of cash that ISIS is facing, I guess that's the start of the end.
 

Redheart

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Pro-ISIS?

No one likes those savages! Even their fighters won't be staying around longer if they can't be paid. It's the beginning of the end for the terrorist group unless some wealthy people [who embrace extremist ideologies] start sending them ca$h.
 

AbeLincoln

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Yeah, I read about that good news. It is a fact that that ISIS (not ISIL-Levant) is a worldwide moral threat to peace and security. They MUST be defunded and destroyed. ISIS supporters and funders shall soon be found out and destroyed along with ISIS.
 

Redheart

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They MUST be defunded and destroyed. ISIS supporters and funders shall soon be found out and destroyed along with ISIS.
Considering the fact that ISIS is tech-savvy, those who want to send them money could be discreet. If they [those who might want to fund them] use bitcoin to send them money then it would be impossible to find out who is supporting extremism. I hope though that their cash woes will degrade the group a development that would make it a lot easier to defeat the terrorists.
 

tasha

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Let us hope that there is not some desperate country that will donate money to them just to make profit out of the war that they want to cause .
 

AbeLincoln

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Russia's leader, Putin, despises ISIS caliphate and has started doing something about ISIS's total destruction. Obama still can't figure out if ISIS is "religious Crusaders" or is radical terrorists beheading Christians and anyone in their way. Obviously, Obama has chosen ISIS crusaders "randomly attacking everywhere."
 

ipm_zipedia

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Let us hope that there is not some desperate country that will donate money to them just to make profit out of the war that they want to cause .
I highly doubt that will be the case. In fact, I think that economy wise, this will be the final strike against ISIS where it really hurts. Never underestimate the value of economic warfare; just look at what it did to Russia.
 

tasha

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I really hope that they do get to stop as this has been going on for far too long now and needs to come to an end for the sake of humanity but I will say that there will be someone out there that will fund their cause and lets hope that is not so!
 

Diane Lane

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This is great news. I'd forgotten that I did see a story that they were having some financial difficulties, but I thought they had rallied. Starving the beast is the best way to bring the enemy to his knees, and it's good to see the philosophy put into action. This is also what needs to be done in Mexico with the drug cartels. The people support them, or at least look the other way, because they are having their needs met by the cartels. They pave roads, provide infrastructure, and jobs, but without money pouring in from sales of their products, they would be unable to perform those functions and provide those jobs and services, and the citizens would not continue to support them. I hope this results in the demise of ISIS, and I hope that eventually, the cartels suffer the same fate.
 

darkrebelchild

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Let's hope for a gradual fall of this terror group; once shortage of money begins, then it means their sponsors are abandoning them and the members would have no choice but to dissociate leaving no one present in the terror group. It is about time there is an end to ISIS, they are neither contributing nor developing the world and no one needs such terror in their lives.
 
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