Iraqi bankers says ISIS militants never stole $US430 million from banks in Mosul, Borzou Daragahi of the Financial Times reports.
The internet had been saturated with rumours since ISIS captured Mosul that the militant group raided the city’s financial institutions and stole close to $US430 million.
Iraqi officials, including prominent former exile Ahmed Chalabi, have been cited in international media detailing the heist and lending credence to the story.
However, according to Iraqi bankers, this story still remains unconfirmed and unlikely.
“Nobody until now has confirmed that story,” Atheel al-Nujaifi, governor of Nineveh province which includes Mosul, told the Financial Times.
Alaa Karam Allah, the CEO of Iraq’s United Bank for Investment, corroborated that view. According to Allah, the bank’s branch in Mosul continued to work normally and had not suffered any assault.
“Not a single center had been stolen from the bank. Isis never put a hand on the money,” Talal Ibrahim, the executive director of the private Union Bank of Iraq, told the Financial Times.
Banks in Mosul reportedly remain open and are guarded by their own private security forces.
Tellingly, ISIS itself has never claimed to have seized money from any institution in the city. ISIS has bragged, though, of its seizure of millions of dollars worth of US military equipment from the Iraqi military after it fled the city.
Among the equipment ISIS ransacked in Mosul were 1,500 U.S.-supplied Humvees and 52 American made howitzers.
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