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Al-Akhtar Trust

Address:
1. ST -1/A, Gulsahn-E-lqbal, Block 2, Karachi 25300, Pakistan;
2. Al-Akhtar Medical Centre, Gulistan-E-Jauhar, Block 12, Karachi, Pakistan;
3. Regional Offices in Pakistan: Bawalnagar, Bahawalpur, Gilgit, Islamabad, Mirpur Khas, and Tando-Jan-Muhammad;
4. Akhtarabad Medical Camp, Spin Boldak, Afghanistan;


Activities:

Following the house arrest of the group leader of Jaish-e-Mohammed, Masoud Azhar, Jaish-e-Mohammed members set up two organizations registered in Pakistan as humanitarian aid agencies: Al-Akhtar Trust, known also as, Al-Akhtar Trust International, and Alkhair Trust. Jaish-e-Mohammed hoped to give the impression that the two new organizations were separate entities and sought to use them as a way to deliver arms and ammunition to their members under the guise of providing humanitarian aid to refugees and other needy groups.


Pakistani newspaper reporting in November 2000 indicated that Al-Akhtar Trust International was established under the supervision of prominent religious scholars for the purpose of providing financial assistance for mujahideen, financial support to the Taliban and food, clothes, and education to orphans of martyrs.


At a ceremony in Islamabad celebrating the establishment of the Trust, the Information Secretary of Harkatul Mujahideen, Maulana Allah Wasaya Qasim, termed the establishment of Al-Akhtar Trust as “commendable” and stated that religious scholars should have entered the field earlier. There was an appeal to the people to support generously the Al-Akhtar Trust.


The Chairman and Chief Executive of Al-Akhtar Trust is Hakeem Muhammad Akhtar, a Pakistani citizen. When asked about his services in Afghanistan and his special relations with Mullah Omar, Supreme Commander of the Taliban, Akhtar stated that their services for the Taliban and Mullah Omar were known to the world.


As of mid-November 2001, the Al-Akhtar Trust was secretly treating wounded Al Qaida members at the medical centers it was operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan.


During a custodial interview in early 2003, a senior Al Qaida detainee related that Al-Akhtar Trust and Al-Rashid Trust were the primary relief agencies that Al Qaida used to move supplies into Qandahar, Afghanistan. This detainee was aware of one shipment, in 2001, arranged by an Al Qaida operative that included a “room full” of cartons. The detainee was not aware of the contents of the cartons, but believed that either Al-Rashid Trust or Al-Akhtar Trust was used for the shipment.


In 2002, Al-Rashid Trust and Al-Akhtar Trust decided to start a drive to collect donations from the business/industrial circles of Pakistan. Mullah Izatullah, an Al Qaida official living in Chaman, Pakistan, was associated with both Al-Rashid Trust and Al-Akhtar Trust. As of mid-March 2002, Al-Akhtar Trust was conducting all activities of the former Al-Rashid Trust.


During a custodial interview in mid-April 2003, a senior Al Qaida detainee stated that Al-Rashid Trust and Al-Akhtar Trust provided donations to Al Qaida. While Al Qaida was based in Qandahar, Afghanistan, these organizations provided donations in the form of blankets and clothing to Al Qaida members. When Al Qaida members fled from Qandahar in late 2001, these organizations provided the families of Al Qaida members with financial assistance.


Al-Akhtar Trust was providing a wide range of support to Al-Qaida and Pakistani based sectarian and jihadi groups, specifically Lashkar-e-Tayyiba, Lashkar-I-Jhangvi, and Jaish-e-Mohammed. These efforts included providing financial and logistical support as well as arranging travel for Islamic extremists.


Reportedly, an associate of Al-Akhtar Trust was attempting to raise funds in order to finance “obligatory jihad” in Iraq (i.e., because fatwas had been issued, Muslims were obligated to support jihad in Iraq). Donors were told they could contact Al-Akhtar Trust via email for additional information.


A financier of Al-Akhtar Trust is also reported to have ties to the kidnapping and murder of the Wall Street Journal’s South Asia Bureau. Chief, Daniel Pearl. According to an article appearing in the Wall Street Journal, on or about January 31 or February 1, 2002, citing Pakistani police, a man named Saud Memon drove into the compound where Daniel Pearl was being held, along with three Arabic-speaking men. The compound was owned by Mr. Memon, a garment manufacturer, and was located in the northern outskirts of Karachi, Pakistan. Eventually, the three Arabic-speaking men, along with one of Mr. Memon’s employees, were left alone with Daniel Pearl in one room of the compound. One of these men turned on a video camera, and another asked Mr. Pearl questions about his religious background. After the videotaped statement by Mr. Pearl, he was blindfolded and killed.


Shortly after the murder, Pakistani police sealed Mr.Memon’s home in Karachi, which also contained his garment business. Mr. Memon remains one of the key figures still at large in the Pearl slaying. Photos of him along with other alleged conspirators have been published throughout Pakistan, and a reward has been offered for information leading to their arrest.


According to the article, Mr. Memon is a known financier for militant groups in association with the Al-Rashid Trust, which is described in the article as having changed its name to Al-Akhtar Trust. Reportedly, an individual by the name of Al-Saud Memon is the individual primarily responsible for the Al-Akhtar Trust’s finances and the direction of financial resources and support for the Trust.

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