UNITAD hands over findings on ISIS financial structure to Iraqi judiciary

“Understanding the connection between ISIL's financial management, organizational structure, and hierarchy is crucial for pinpointing those most responsible for the international crimes perpetrated by ISIL in Iraq."
Head of Judiciary Faiq Zidan (right) and head of UNITAD Christian Ritscher in Baghdad, Feb. 12, 2024. (Photo: KRG)
Head of Judiciary Faiq Zidan (right) and head of UNITAD Christian Ritscher in Baghdad, Feb. 12, 2024. (Photo: KRG)

ERBIL (Kurdistan24) – Christian Ritscher, the Special Adviser and Head of the United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes committed by ISIS (UNITAD), presented a new case assessment report on the financial structure of ISIS to the Iraqi judiciary on Monday.

The case assessment report on the ISIS Structure of Diwan Bayt al-Mal (2014-2017) alongside the evidence was handed over to Faiq Zaidan, President of the Supreme Judicial Council at the Council in Baghdad.

Read More: Iraqi Foreign Minister, UNITAD head address ISIS atrocities

“This report encompasses UNITAD’s findings, thus far, on ISIL’s treasury, which is one of the most important lines of inquiry for the Team’s investigations, as it delves into the financial infrastructure ISIL put in place to sustain the organization’s military operations,” said Special Adviser Ritscher, in a press release.

The press release added that the findings of this case assessment report demonstrate ISIL’s management of Bayt al-Mal and how the power to make financial decisions and adopt financial policies “rested with the highest authorities, namely the Delegated Committee, the Shura Council and the Caliph.”

“Understanding the connection between ISIL's financial management, organizational structure, and hierarchy is crucial for pinpointing those most responsible for the international crimes perpetrated by ISIL in Iraq. It is an important piece of the puzzle which is vital for drawing the full the picture of the range of heinous crimes committed by ISIL,” Ritscher said.

UNITAD was set up through resolution 2379 of 21 September 2017 to investigate ISIS crimes in Iraq. However, Baghdad wants to end the UNITAD’s mandate in September 2024.

Read More: UNITAD chief says end to UNITAD mission will be a loss to Iraq

An Iraqi diplomat in December last year complained that Baghdad has only received reports that have no legal value before national courts and has received no evidence from UNITAD that could be used in criminal proceedings.

Under Iraqi law, the death penalty can be imposed on suspects charged with terrorism offenses. The UNITAD says this has prevented them from sharing evidence with Baghdad.

UNITAD on Monday stated that in the coming months, UNITAD will hand over to the Iraqi judiciary a series of case assessment reports on ISIS crimes, including the provision of evidence.