Arab media is reporting that the Saudi-based International Islamic Relief Organization (IIRO)is planning to open overseas chapters in various countries in the Middle East and Africa. According to an Arab News report:
The International Islamic Relief Organization-Saudi Arabia (IIROSA), a major Saudi-based charity with a mandate to provide necessary aid and relief globally, plans to open overseas chapters in various countries, Adnan Khalil Basha, IIROSA secretary-general told Arab News on the sidelines of a reception hosted for foreign diplomats based in the capital here on Tuesday. The recepion was organized to highlight the IIROSA programs and projects being carried out in different countries. The IIROSA aims to identify impoverished areas and the needy population across the world, especially in countries where Muslims are in minority and to lend them support on priority basis. The event was addressed by Abdullah bin Abdulmohsin Al-Turki, secretary-general of the Muslim World League (MWL). Diplomats from the Arab region, Islamic countries, Africa, Europe and Americas attended the conference. A number of foreign envoys and diplomats praised the IIROSA activities saying the organization has been delivering aid in different parts of the world adhering to the international rules that govern charities. Referring to the expansion plan undertaken by the IIROSA, Basha said his organization was planning to open new chapters in Tunisia, Morocco, Algeria, India, Cote d’Ivoire, Sierra Leone, Angola and a few other countries. About the dangers posed to aid workers in countries such as Tunisia, where the situation is still volatile, he said that ‘this is the time to open IIROSA offices in countries like Tunisia and at places where there are uprisings, unrest, natural disasters and poverty.’ ‘Every year, the IIROSA plans to open five or six chapters across the world, but sometimes we succeed and sometimes we don’t because of stricter regulations in those countries or tight licensing regulations,’ said the IIROSA chief. ‘In fact, we are working to open a chapter in India,’ said Basha, adding that the IIROSA is doing its best to bring home to Indian officials that it is a transparent organization. He said the IIROSA wanted to boost communication with different societies across the world to promote greater understanding and friendship. ‘Our work is purely humanitarian and we do our best to serve the needy around the world without any discrimination.’
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A post from July discussed the influence of Saudi Arabia on Pakistan including the IIRO.
The IIRO is an affiliate of the Muslim World League (MWL) which was established in 1962 as a means for the propagation of Saudi “Wahabbi” Islam. Muslim Brothers played an important role in its founding and, to date, the League has been strongly with the Brotherhood. The MWL, together with the World Assembly of Muslim Youth (WAMY), are Saudi organizations believed by U.S. government officials to have helped to spread Islamic extremism around the world as well as sponsoring terrorism in places such as Bosnia, Israel, and India. In 2006, the U.S. Treasury Department designated the Philippine and Indonesian branch offices of the IIRO as well as one of its executives in connection with fundraising for al-Qaeda and al-Qaeda affiliates. Previous posts have discussed the history of the IIRO in the US, its ties to the US Muslim Brotherhood as well as the recent registration of its new US office in Florida, and its new international image campaign.