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"Foreign Terrorist Organization" is a designation of non-United Statesmarker-based organizations declared terrorist by the United States Secretary of State in accordance with section 219 of the U.S. Immigration and Nationality Act (INA). Most of the organizations on the list are Islamist groups, with the remainder being mainly Communist groups, followed by nationalist/separatist groups.

Identification of candidates

The Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism (S/CT) in the U.S.marker State Departmentmarker continually monitors the activities of groups active around the world considered potentially terrorist to identify potential targets for designation. When reviewing potential targets, S/CT looks not only at the actual terrorist attacks that a group has carried out, but also at whether the group has engaged in planning and preparations for possible future acts of terrorism or retains the capability and intent to carry out such acts.

Designation process

Once a target is identified, the Office of the Coordinator for Counterterrorism prepares a detailed "administrative record," which is a compilation of information, typically including both classified and open sources information, demonstrating that the statutory criteria for designation have been satisfied. If the Secretary of State, in consultation with the Attorney General and the Secretary of the Treasury, decides to make the designation, United States Congress is notified of the Secretary's intent to designate the organization and given seven days to review the designation, as the INA requires. Upon the expiration of the seven-day waiting period, notice of the designation is published in the Federal Register, at which point the designation takes effect. An organization designated as an FTO may seek judicial review of the designation in the United States Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit not later than 30 days after the designation is published in the Federal Register.

Under the Intelligence Reform and Terrorism Prevention Act of 2004 the FTO may file a petition for revocation two years after the designation date (or in the case of redesignated FTOs, its most recent redesignation date) or two years after the determination date on its most recent petition for revocation. In order to provide a basis for revocation, the petitioning FTO must provide evidence that the circumstances forming the basis for the designation are sufficiently different as to warrant revocation. If no such review has been conducted during a five year period with respect to a designation, then the Secretary of State is required to review the designation to determine whether revocation would be appropriate.

The procedural requirements for designating an organization as an FTO also apply to any redesignation of that organization. The Secretary of State may revoke a designation or redesignation at any time upon a finding that the circumstances that were the basis for the designation or redesignation have changed in such a manner as to warrant revocation, or that the national security of the United States warrants a revocation. The same procedural requirements apply to revocations made by the Secretary of State as apply to designations or redesignations. A designation may also be revoked by an Act of Congress, or set aside by a Court order.

Legal criteria for designation

(Reflecting Amendments to Section 219 of the INA in the 2001 USA PATRIOT Act)

  • It must be a foreign organization.
  • The organization must engage in terrorist activity, as defined in section 212 (a)(3)(B) of the INA (8 U.S.C. § 1182(a)(3)(B)),* or terrorism, as defined in section 140(d)(2) of the Foreign Relations Authorization Act, Fiscal Years 1988 and 1989 (22 U.S.C. § 2656f(d)(2)),** or retain the capability and intent to engage in terrorist activity or terrorism.
  • The organization’s terrorist activity or terrorism must threaten the security of U.S. nationals or the national security (national defense, foreign relations, or the economic interests) of the United States.

Legal ramifications of designation

  • It is unlawful for a person in the United States or subject to the jurisdiction of the United States to knowingly provide "material support or resources" to a designated FTO. (The term "material support or resources" is defined in 18 U.S.C. § 2339A(b) as "currency or monetary instruments or financial securities, financial services, lodging, training, expert advice or assistance, safehouses, false documentation or identification, communications equipment, facilities, weapons, lethal substances, explosives, personnel, transportation, and other physical assets, except medicine or religious materials.)"
  • Representatives and members of a designated FTO, if they are aliens, are inadmissible to and, in certain circumstances, removable from the United States (see 8 U.S.C. §§ 1182 (a)(3)(B)(i)(IV)-(V), 1227 (a)(1)(A)).
  • Any U.S. financial institution that becomes aware that it has possession of or control over funds in which a designated FTO or its agent has an interest must retain possession of or control over the funds and report the funds to the Office of Foreign Assets Control of the U.S. Department of the Treasury.

Other effects of designation

The U.S. Department of State lists the following items as additional considered beneficial effects of designation:
  • Supports efforts to curb terrorism financing and to encourage other nations to do the same.
  • Stigmatizes and isolates designated terrorist organizations internationally.
  • Deters donations or contributions to and economic transactions with named organizations.
  • Heightens public awareness and knowledge of terrorist organizations.
  • Signals to other governments U.S. concern about named organizations.

Groups currently designated as Foreign Terrorist Organizations

  1. Abu Nidal Organization (ANO) (International, Palestinian)
  2. Abu Sayyaf Group (ASG) (Philippinesmarker)
  3. Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigades|Al-Aqsa Martyrs Brigade (Palestinian)
  4. Al-Shabaab (Somaliamarker)
  5. Ansar al-Islam (Iraqi Kurdistanmarker)
  6. Armed Islamic Group (GIA) (Algeriamarker)
  7. Asbat an-Ansar (Lebanonmarker)
  8. Aum Shinrikyo (Japanmarker)
  9. Basque Fatherland and Liberty (ETA) (Spainmarker, Francemarker)
  10. Communist Party of the Philippines/New People's Army (CPP/NPA) (Philippinesmarker)
  11. Continuity Irish Republican Army (CIRA) (Northern Irelandmarker)
  12. Gama’a al-Islamiyya (Egyptmarker)
  13. HAMAS (Palestinian)
  14. Harakat ul-Jihad-i-Islami/Bangladesh (HUJI-B) (Bangladeshmarker)
  15. Harakat ul-Mujahidin (HUM) (Pakistanmarker)
  16. Hizballah (Lebanonmarker)
  17. Hizbul Islam (Somaliamarker)
  18. Islamic Jihad Group (Palestinian)
  19. Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan (IMU) (Uzbekistanmarker)
  20. Jaish-e-Mohammed (JEM) (Pakistanmarker)
  21. Jemaah Islamiya organization (JI) (South East Asia)
  22. al-Jihad (Egyptian Islamic Jihad) (Egyptmarker)
  23. Kahane Chai (Israelmarker)
  24. Kongra-Gel (KGK, formerly PKK, KADEK, Kongra-Gel) (Turkeymarker, Iraqmarker, Iranmarker, Syriamarker)
  25. Lashkar-e Tayyiba (LT) (Muridkemarker, Pakistanmarker)
  26. Lashkar i Jhangvi (Pakistanmarker)
  27. Liberation Tigers of Tamil Eelam (LTTE) (Sri Lankamarker)
  28. Libyan Islamic Fighting Group (LIFG) (Libyamarker)
  29. Moroccan Islamic Combatant Group (GICM) (Moroccomarker)
  30. Mujahedin-e Khalq Organization (MEK) (Iranmarker)
  31. National Liberation Army (ELN) (Colombiamarker)
  32. Palestine Liberation Front (PLF) (Palestinian)
  33. Palestinian Islamic Jihad (PIJ) (Palestinian)
  34. Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) (Palestinian)
  35. PFLP-General Command (PFLP-GC) (Palestinian)
  36. Tanzim Qa'idat al-Jihad fi Bilad al-Rafidayn (QJBR) (al-Qaida in Iraq) (formerly Jama'at al-Tawhid wa'al-Jihad, JTJ, al-Zarqawi Network) (Iraqmarker)
  37. al-Qa’ida (Global)
  38. al-Qa’ida in the Islamic Maghreb (formerly GSPC) (The Maghreb)
  39. Real IRA (Northern Irelandmarker)
  40. Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia (FARC) (Colombiamarker)
  41. Revolutionary Nuclei (formerly ELA) (Greecemarker)
  42. Revolutionary Organization 17 November (Greecemarker)
  43. Revolutionary People's Liberation Party/Front (DHKP/C) (Turkeymarker)
  44. Shining Path (Sendero Luminoso, SL) (Perumarker)
  45. United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia (AUC) (Colombiamarker)

See also

External links

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