Cyprus and the United States join forces to combat money laundering, terrorism financing
Memorandum Demonstrates Continued Cooperation
WASHINGTON D.C., April, 2005 – The Republic of Cyprus and the United States have entered into a joint agreement designed to further strengthen their ties in the fight against money laundering, the financing of terrorism and related crimes.
“The United States and Cyprus have long enjoyed a strong relationship, and this new action further strengthens our record of close cooperation in combating money laundering and denying access to financial systems to those who fund terrorism,” said Ambassador Euripides L. Evriviades, Cyprus’ Ambassador to the United States. “Cyprus is pleased to sign this Memorandum and welcomes the opportunity to continue to work closely with the United States on this and other matters.”
The Ambassador was referring to this week’s signing of a Memorandum of Understanding between the Cyprus Unit for Combating Money Laundering (MOKAS) and the U.S. Department of the Treasury Financial Crimes Enforcement Network (FinCEN). The focus of the Memorandum is international cooperation on issues concerning money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism. The goal of the Memorandum is to help facilitate the exchange of any information relevant to the investigation of money laundering, terrorist financing and related crimes.
A news release issued by the U.S. Embassy in Nicosia said the Memorandum “facilitates the exchange of information relating to money laundering and terrorism finance and formalizes the already excellent cooperation between FinCEN and MOKAS.’’ It also said, “Cyprus is an important partner in the global war on terrorism. . . . Money laundering and terrorist finance are global issues that affect us all and require a global response. The Embassy welcomes the Memorandum of Understanding as another step forward in our joint effort to combat money laundering and to deny terrorists access to the international financial system.”
This week’s action builds on previous steps taken by the Republic of Cyprus. In 2001, Cyprus ratified the UN International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism. Cyprus has ratified all 12 UN Conventions relating to the fight against International Terrorism and is among the original signatories of the UN Convention against Corruption. Cyprus was also the first EU Member to have ratified the UN Convention against Transnational Organized Crime and all its additional protocols. Cyprus also provided important cooperation with the U.S. military efforts in Iraq by approving military over-flights and landing rights for Operation Iraqi Freedom.