US official: ‘Islamic State’ a petrostate

The “Islamic State” has amassed wealth at an unprecedented pace, according to a US Treasury official. IS earns about $1 million a day from black market oil sales alone.

David Cohen, US treasury undersecretary for terrorism and financial intelligence, said the “Islamic State” (IS) pulls in 790,000 euros daily, selling up to 50,000 barrels produced in captured refineries.

Speaking to the Carnegie Endowment for International Peace in Washington, DC, Thursday, Cohen said the group took in at least $20 million in ransom payments this year from kidnappings. He said IS gets several million dollars a month from wealthy donors, extortion rackets and other criminal activities, such as robbing banks. Continue reading