November 9, 2014 In May of 2013, the financial rating of Islamic Relief USA, the nation’s largest Islamic charity, was downgraded from four stars to two stars by the nonprofit watchdog Charity Navigator. By October of 2013, it was announced that IR-USA’s chief executive officer, Abed Ayoub, was leaving IR-USA to take over a northern Virginia charity now known as United Muslim Relief (UMR), that had dropped its old name, ‘Muslims Without Borders’ one day earlier.
While he was CEO of IR-USA, Ayoub presided over a period of falsely inflated growth for the well-known Islamic charity. By grossly misstating the value of deworming drugs, IR-USA gave the appearance of having over received over $160 million in donations in 2010. When it used corrected valuation techniques in 2011, IR-USA reported contributions of only $60 million. The fraudulent bookkeeping of 2001-2010 enabled IR-USA to attract larger institutional donors than it otherwise would have, along with political endorsements from top Democrats and partnerships with federal agencies. Smaller Islamic charities were some of the victims of this fraud, because federal officials have often encouraged Muslim donors to give their zakat to larger, more ‘trustworthy,’ charities like IR-USA. During Ayoub’s final year as CEO, IR-USA donated over $100,000 to nonprofits and mosques connected with terrorism.
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The GMBDW reported in August 2011 that Islamic Relief USA (IRUSA) had a “collaborative partnership” with the USDA’s Center for Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and that IRUSA had pledged to host 50 sites as part of a Michelle Obama initiative.
Previous posts have discussed the relationship between Islamic Relief USA and the Tarek ibn Ziyad Academy, an Islamic charter school with strong connections to the Muslim American Society (MAS). The MAS was established in 1993 by leaders of the U.S. Muslim Brotherhood and a Hudson Institute report has discussed the relationship of the MAS to both the Egyptian and U.S. Muslim Brotherhood.
The IRUSA website identifies Azhar Azeez as its Director of Fund Development. The GMBDW reported in August 2004 that Mr. Azeez has been elected as the new President of the Islamic Society of North America (ISNA), an important part of the US Muslim Brotherhood. The IRUSA site also describes Mr. Azeez as a senior National Director of IRUSA. Our post on his election as ISNA President also detailed his extensive ties to both the Council on American Islamic Relations (CAIR), another part of the US Muslim Brotherhood, as well as to organizations in Texas known to have part of the Hamas support infrastructure in the US.
Dr. Yaser Haddara was also a member of the IRUSA board since 2006 and its chairman until May 2011. According to his profile, Dr. Haddra has been active in the Muslim Society of America (MAS), the Islamic Society of North America, and the Muslim Association of Canada (MAC), all known to be part of the Muslim Brotherhood in North America.
For a profile on Islamic Relief Worldwide, the parent of IRUSA, go here.