Freezing funds: list of terrorists and terrorist groups

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Freezing funds: list of terrorists and terrorist groups

Outline of the Community (European Union) legislation about Freezing funds: list of terrorists and terrorist groups


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Justice freedom and security > Fight against terrorism

Freezing funds: list of terrorists and terrorist groups

Document or Iniciative

Council Common Position 2001/931/CFSP of 27 December 2001 on the application of specific measures to combat terrorism.


The extraordinary European Council of 21 September 2001 defined terrorism as one of the main challenges facing the world and identified the fight against terrorism as one of the European Union’s (EU) priority objectives. The purpose of this common position is to apply further measures to combat terrorism, in addition to the United Nations Security Council Resolution 1373 (2001). Specifically, it establishes a list of individuals, groups and entities involved in terrorism whose funds and other financial assets are to be frozen as part of the fight against the financing of terrorism.


“Persons, groups and entities involved in terrorist acts” means individuals, groups and entities on whom there is accurate information proving that they have committed, are attempting to commit or are facilitating the commission of terrorist acts.

“Terrorist acts” are defined as intentional acts that may seriously damage a country or an international organisation by intimidating a population, exerting undue compulsion of various types or by destabilising or destroying its fundamental political, constitutional, economic or social structures. The list of terrorist acts includes:

  • attacks on a person’s life or physical integrity;
  • kidnapping or hostage-taking;
  • causing extensive destruction to a public or private facility, including information systems;
  • seizure of means of public transport, such as aircrafts and ships;
  • manufacture, possession, acquisition, transport or use of weapons, explosives, or nuclear, biological or chemical weapons;
  • release of dangerous substances or causing fires, explosions or floods;
  • interfering with or disrupting the supply of water, power or any other fundamental natural resource;
  • directing or participating in the activities of a terrorist group, including by funding its activities or supplying material resources.

Merely threatening to commit any of these criminal acts is also to be treated as a terrorist offence.

The common position also defines “terrorist groups” as structured groups of persons, acting in concert to commit terrorist acts, regardless of their composition or the level of development of their structure.

List of individuals and entities concerned

The list annexed to the common position is drawn up on the basis of investigations carried out by the competent judicial and police authorities in EU countries. It must be revised at least every six months, so as to keep it up to date. The list comprises revolutionary activist groups, as well as the names of individuals belonging to such groups, including:

  • CIRA (Continuity Irish Republican Army);
  • E.T.A (Basque Fatherland and Liberty);
  • G.R.A.P.O (the First of October Anti-Fascist Resistance Group);
  • Hamas-Izz al-Din al-Qassem (terrorist wing of Hamas);
  • LVF (Loyalist Volunteer Force)
  • PIJ (Palestinian Islamic Jihad).

Osama bin Laden and individuals and groups associated with him do not feature on the list, as they are already covered by Council Common Position 2002/402/CFSP of 27 May 2002 concerning restrictive measures against Osama bin Laden, members of the Al-Qaida organisation and the Taliban and other individuals, groups, undertakings and entities associated with them. The measures in this common position are applied by Regulation (EC) No 881/2002, adopted on the same date.

Measures to be taken by the EU and its countries

Acting within the limits of its powers, the EU is to freeze the funds and other financial assets of the individuals and groups on the list. It is also to ensure that these individuals and groups do not gain access to the frozen funds and assets.

Through appropriate police and judicial cooperation, EU countries are to afford each other assistance in preventing and combating terrorist acts. For the purposes of investigating and prosecuting any of the persons and entities on the list, they may fully exploit the powers conferred on them by acts of the EU or under any other bilateral or international agreements.

Similarly to this common position, Council Common Position 2001/930/CFSP of 27 December 2001 on combating terrorism provides for the freezing of the funds and other financial assets and economic resources of individuals and groups facilitating, attempting to commit or committing terrorist acts on the territory of the EU.


Act Entry into force Deadline for transposition in the Member States Official Journal
Common Position 2001/931/CFSP


OJ L 344 of 28.12.2001

Related Acts

Council Regulation (EC) No 2580/2001 of 27 December 2001 on specific restrictive measures directed against certain persons and entities with a view to combating terrorism [Official Journal L 344 of 28.12.2001].
This regulation is a necessary EU-level measure that builds on the administrative and judicial procedures relating to terrorist organisations in EU and non-EU countries. It sets out to clamp down on any sort of financing of terrorist activities. To this end, it specifies what is meant by “funds and other financial assets” to be frozen, “banking and other financial services” and “controlling a legal person”. The regulation also provides for exceptions to unfreeze assets in certain circumstances.
The regulation provides for the establishment, review and amending of a list of persons, groups and entities to which it applies. This list has been updated by successive regulations and decisions.

Council Decision 2005/671/JHA of 20 September 2005 on the exchange of information and cooperation concerning terrorist offences [Official Journal L 253 of 29.9.2005].

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