Countering terrorist financing: a case study of the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK)
Kanmaz, Mehmet A.
Looney, Robert E.
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Terrorist organizations require financial resources to fund their activities. Therefore, the struggle to stem the flow of terrorist financing is one of the most crucial aspects of an effective strategy to combat terrorism. This thesis aims to form an effective strategy to counter terrorist financing. To reach more accurate outcomes, this thesis focuses on a specific terrorist organization, the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), which has been a problem in Turkey for over 30 years. The study investigates the financial activities of the PKK and evaluates Turkey’s possible countermeasures against the PKK’s financing. Since a theoretical framework is important in creating an effective strategy, this study utilizes Michael Freeman’s theory of terrorist financing that examines terrorists’ interests in their selection of financial resources using six criteria. In accordance with Freeman’s theory, this study suggests that Turkey’s efforts to concentrate its financial countermeasures on the PKK’s most lucrative financial resource, drug trafficking, may bring more effective results. Nevertheless, Turkey should not ignore the PKK’s other types of financial resources because they also bring a substantial amount to the terrorist group. Turkey’s 30-year struggle against the PKK and experiences of other countries that have achieved success in disrupting terrorist financing would help Turkey counter the PKK’s financing.
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