UNITED NATIONS - The U.N. Security Council unanimously adopted a resolution Thursday aimed at disrupting revenue that the Islamic State extremist group gets from oil and antiquities sales, ransom payments, and other criminal activities - a goal that finance ministers agree will be challenging.
Islamic State, also known as ISIL and Daesh, is already subject to U.N. sanctions under resolutions dealing with al-Qaeda. The resolution, sponsored by the United States and Russia, elevates IS to the same level as al-Qaeda, reflecting its growing threat and split from the terror network behind the 9/11 attacks.
It puts "association with ISIL" as well as al-Qaeda among the critera for sanctions, including a financial freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo.
U.S. Treasury Secretary Jacob Lew, who chaired the meeting, called ISIL "a challenging financial target" because unlike other "terror groups" such as al-Qaeda it gets a relatively small share of its funding from donors abroad.
The Islamic State group controls a large swath of Syria and Iraq, including oil and gas fields, though bombing campaigns by the U.S.-led coalition and ground forces have enabled Iraq to regain some territory.
France's Finance Minister Michel Sapin told the council that no country is safe from ISIL attacks, and that since June 2014 about 1,600 people around the world have been killed in attacks by the group or others loyal to it.
While foreign ministers from the 15 council nations will be meeting in New York on Friday to discuss a political solution to the Syrian civil war, he said every country has to play a part in stemming the flow of money to extremist groups.
"What sets Daesh apart and makes it so powerful is the fact that it has amassed a sizable war chest by a variety of means including smuggling, extortion and trafficking," Sapin said. "There is no crime that Daesh will not commit to finance itself."