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UBS blocks Palestinian-bound payments

Swiss bank UBS no longer does business involving the Palestinian territories, as a customer recently discovered.

This content was published on August 28, 2010 - 12:32

She had wanted to send money to an aid organisation called Urgence Palestine-Vaud, but the bank declined to process the transaction.

The decision was based on bank policy established in September 2008, UBS spokesman Serge Steiner said in Saturday’s Fribourg-based La Liberté newspaper.

Payment transactions with certain countries and in certain areas are restricted based on international sanctions and UBS’s own judgment, Steiner said. However, payments to approved aid organisations such as Unicef are still possible.

This is not the first time that a Swiss bank has put a country on its black list. In 2006, Credit Suisse stopped processing transactions involving Cuba. UBS does not do business related to Iran, Myanmar, Sudan, North Korea and Syria.

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