Pakistan urged to intensify efforts on countering terrorist financing

Adoba Echono

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Pakistan has been alleged not to have fully complied in showing its commitment on cracking down on terrorist financial networks in the country.

Ahead of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) review this month on Pakistan’s performance on countering terrorist financing, Islamabad has been urged to comply with the (FATF) regulations.

Paris-based money-laundering watchdog, (FATF) placed Pakistan on the grey list in June 2018, for its failure to address the problem of terrorism financing.

Since then, Pakistan’s performance has been under periodic review, but every time, it is found to be deficient in its efforts.

In the last meeting of the FATF in October 2021, Pakistan was once again retained on the ‘grey list’ because it failed to prosecute and confiscate the assets of United Nations-designated terrorists.

The outcome document from the meeting had noted that, “The FATF encourages Pakistan to continue to make progress to address as soon as possible the one remaining CFT (counterterrorist financing) related item by demonstrating that TF (terrorist financing) investigations and prosecutions target senior leaders and commanders of UN-designated terrorist groups.”

“FATF officials also noted that Pakistan was still failing to effectively implement the global FATF standard across several areas, creating a high risk of money laundering.”

However, the review meeting is set to happen in February 2022, Pakistan has been alleged not to have fully complied with the regulations.

So far, it is reported that, Pakistan has taken action only against the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and its leaders like Hafiz Saeed has been evading to take action against other LeT leaders and other groups like the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and its leader Masood Azhar, which had been responsible for the deadly suicide attacks targeting the Indian security forces, including the February 2019 Pulwama attack.

According to report, the crackdown has not deterred even the LeT, multiple reports suggest that its front organisation, the Falah-e-Insaniyat Foundation, continues its activities in Punjab and PoK, including fund-raising and recruitment.

Pakistan’s failure in taking adequate action in response to the enhanced monitoring undertaken by the FATF, the country has been unable to secure investment in a bid to boost country’s economy.

 

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