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Cablegate: Hong Kong: 2009 Country Reports On Terrorism

VZCZCXYZ0002
PP RUEHWEB

DE RUEHHK #2295 3510002
ZNR UUUUU ZZH
P 170002Z DEC 09
FM AMCONSUL HONG KONG
TO RUEHC/SECSTATE WASHDC PRIORITY 9194
INFO RUEILB/NCTC WASHINGTON DC

UNCLAS HONG KONG 002295

SIPDIS

STATE FOR EAP/CM
STATE ALSO FOR S/CT RHONDA SHORE AND NCTC

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: ASEC PTER HK
SUBJECT: HONG KONG: 2009 COUNTRY REPORTS ON TERRORISM

REF: STATE 109980

Per reftel request, this is Consulate General Hong Kong's submission
on Hong Kong for the 2009 Country Reports on Terrorism. Point of
contact is Jose Sandoval, Economic/Political Section, telephone:
852-2841-2126, e-mail address: sandovaljl@state.gov

Hong Kong
---------

Hong Kong is neither home to nor does it support terrorist groups.
However, Hong Kong's position as a major transit point for cargo,
international finance, and people, coupled with its open trade and
financial regime, make it a potential site for money laundering and
terrorist financing activities.

Hong Kong is a close partner in the fight against terrorism. The
Hong Kong Government successfully participated in the Secure Freight
Initiative pilot project through its conclusion on April 30, 2009.
The Container Security Initiative in Hong Kong remained effective
and cooperation with Hong Kong Customs officials received continued
praise from visiting USG delegations.

Hong Kong law enforcement agencies provided full support and
cooperation to their overseas counterparts in tracing financial
transactions suspected of links to terrorist activities, and
participated in USG-sponsored training on financial crimes and
strategic commodity identification, among other topics.

In October 2009, Hong Kong's police, fire, health, and other
government services held emergency response drills simulating
chemical, biological, radiological, and nuclear attacks.
During the Hong Kong-hosted East Asia Games in December 2009, Hong
Kong deployed its newly established police Counter Terrorist
Readiness Unit (CTRU). In addition to providing a counterterrorist
(CT) deterrent presence, the CTRU assisted police districts with CT
strategy implementation and provided tactical and professional
support to Hong Kong's existing specialist units, such as Hong
Kong's Special Duties Unit and its VIP Protection Unit.

Hong Kong actively participated in various anti-money laundering and
counterterrorist financing initiatives, including the Financial
Action Task Force (FATF) and the Asia/Pacific Group (APG) on Money
Laundering. Hong Kong is a member of the Egmont Group of Financial
Intelligence Units, reporting through its Joint Financial
Intelligence Unit operated by the Hong Kong Police and the Customs
and Excise Department.

In response to recommendations stemming from the 2007 FATF and APG
mutual evaluation of Hong Kong, authorities are drafting legislation
to: increase supervision of money changers and remittance agents;
create statutory requirements for customer due diligence and
record-keeping in the banking, securities and insurance sectors; and
establish civil penalties for these infractions. Legislation to
establish government oversight for non-financial professions and to
create a cross-border currency reporting mechanism is needed to
address additional FATF recommendations.

MARUT

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