3 US law firms sue Turkish bank for providing terrorist support

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Kuveyt Türk Member of the Board Ufuk Uyan (L3) and Frankfurt AG supervisory board president Lutz R. Raettig (L4) attend the opening of Kuveyt Türk Bank's new branch in Frankfurt, Germany in this file photo dated 2015.

Three US law firms have sued a leading Turkish participation bank on behalf of an American family for aiding and abetting terrorist activity, Washington-based law firm Stein Mitchell Beato & Missner said in a press release on Monday, according to the Ahval news website.

Stein Mitchell and two other firms say the government of Turkey, which is one of the bank’s largest shareholders, has permitted Palestinian militant organization Hamas to operate within its borders. Hamas is considered a terrorist organization by Israel, the United States and the European Union, but not by Turkey.

The case against Kuveyt Türk Katılım Bankası A.Ş. is one of many seeking to “bring justice against international banks that have provided material support to or aided and abetted terrorist organizations,” the press release said.

Founded in 1989, Kuveyt Türk is the largest of five participation banks in Turkey providing interest free banking.

As of 2017 the bank had 392 branch offices employing 5,600 staff. Its shareholders include Kuwait Finance House holding 62,24 percent, the Turkish General Directorate of Foundations 18 percent, the Kuwaiti Public Institution for Social Security 9 percent and the Islamic Development Bank holding 9 percent.

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