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Tuesday, November 22, 2005

ISNA Cleared in Senate Investigation

On November 15, 2005, The Indianapolis Star reported, "A U.S. Senate committee found nothing 'alarming' in the financial records of the Plainfield-based Islamic Society of North America and nearly two dozen other Muslim groups the committee reviewed searching for terrorist connections.

'Of course we were sure that nothing would come out with regard to ISNA, but it is good to see that they have come to that conclusion as well,' said Louay Safi, executive director of an Islamic Society program that develops new Muslim leaders.

In seeking the tax records of the Muslim groups in December 2003, Senate Finance Committee leaders said they would look at the 'crucial role that charities and foundations play in terror financing' and that 'often these groups are nothing more than shell companies.'

But almost two years later, the committee has concluded its work with no plans to issue a report, forward any findings to law enforcement agents, hold hearings or propose new legislation.

'We did not find anything alarming enough that required additional follow-up beyond what law enforcement is already doing,' U.S. Sen. Charles Grassley, the Iowa Republican who heads the committee, said in a statement. 'If something in the future does cause new concern, we will continue the investigation.'

Since the Sept. 11, 2001, terrorist attacks, federal authorities have shut down a few of the largest Muslim charities in the United States under suspicion of funneling money to terrorists. Similar freezes have been placed on assets of organizations in other parts of the world."

This article cross-posted at the Pluralism Project's Religious Diversity News.

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