In a setback to Saudi Arabia, the European Commission has added the country’s name to an EU draft list of countries which have complacent controls against terrorism financing and money laundering, two sources told Reuters on Friday.
The EU’s list currently consists of 16 countries, including Iran, Iraq, Syria, Afghanistan, Yemen and North Korea, and is mostly based on criteria used by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global body composed by wealthy nations meant to combat money laundering and terrorism financing.
The move comes in the middle of heightened international pressure on Saudi Arabia after the murder of Saudi journalist Jamal Khashoggi in the kingdom’s Istanbul consulate on Oct. 2.
The list was updated last week, using new criteria developed by the EU Commission since 2017. Saudi Arabia is one of the countries added to the updated list which is still confidential, one EU source and one Saudi source told Reuters.