Sunday, February 04, 2018

Press Availability With Argentine Foreign Minister Jorge Faurie

Rex W. Tillerson
Buenos Aires, Argentina
February 4, 2018
QUESTION:  When you discussed counternarcotics and counterterrorism, did you discuss reports that the Hizballah organization, which is fighting in Syria, is able to raise money in this region, including in Argentina?

SECRETARY TILLERSON:  With respect to Hizballah, we also did speak today in our discussions about all of the reasons why we must jointly go after these trans-criminal organizations – narcotics trafficking, human trafficking, smuggling, money laundering – because we see the connections to terrorist financing organizations as well. And we did specifically discuss the presence of Lebanese Hizballah in this hemisphere, which is raising funds obviously to support their terrorist activities. So it is something that we jointly agree we need to attack and eliminate.

FOREIGN MINISTER FAURIE: (Via interpreter)  As regards the actions of terrorist groups in the region, we are very closely watching developments because one of the significant features of Latin America and South America nowadays is that it's a zone of peace, and this zone of peace should not be jeopardized by the actions of external groups, whether they use the region to search for financing, whether they seek to act within our regions. And as Secretary Tillerson said, we need to intensify every possible exchange, not only in terms of dialogue but also in terms of information on the actions of these groups which take advantage of transnational crime to foster their interests, which Argentina certainly does not agree with.