Politicians lash out at India over FATF admission

Ask global watchdog to issue a clarification over Jaishankar’s remarks


Our Correspondent July 20, 2021

ISLAMABAD:

Leaders from across the political spectrum on Monday lashed out at India for its admission that the Narendra Modi-led government had ensured Pakistan remained on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) grey list.

Taking to the social media, they also called for the global anti-money laundering watchdog to issue a clarification over "India's admission", which was seen as a vindication of Pakistan's longstanding stance that New Delhi had politicised the FATF and "interfered in the workings of a technical forum".

A day earlier, India's Minister for External Affairs S Jaishankar said the Modi-led Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) government had ensured that Pakistan remained on the FATF 'grey list', Hindustan Times reported.

Commenting on the admission, Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi said that Pakistan "consistently maintained" that India had politicised FATF and the recent Indian statement had made clear their ill will.

"Manipulating an important technical forum for narrow political designs against Pakistan is disgraceful but not surprising for the Modi government," he tweeted.

Federal Minister for Energy Hammad Azhar maintained that Jaishankar’s statement "only confirms what Pakistan has been saying all along; India actively politicises & undermines the technical processes and spirit of FATF".

Read Pakistan likely to approach FATF president against India

He noted that Pakistan's progress in fulfilling the FATF's action plan items was "undeniable" and it would soon complete its action plans.

Federal Human Rights Minister Shireen Mazari said that the Modi-led government's "frustration at its failed Pak[istan] policies" had pushed it to "acts of desperation".

She observed that the statement by the Indian foreign minister proved India was trying to "destroy [the] credibility" of international institutions like FATF by seeking to "undermine its technical working through political machinations".

"India's membership of the FATF becomes a 'question mark' under the Modi[-led] government's funding of terrorism in the neighbourhood," she tweeted.

Taking a jibe at the Modi-led government, Minister for Shipping and Maritime Affairs Ali Haider Zaidi asked: "So is India influencing the world’s anti-money laundering task force?"

PML-N President Shehbaz Sharif maintained that India's admission raised "serious questions on the integrity of FATF's decision-making process".

"The watchdog must clarify that it is not being used against Pakistan at the behest of others!" Shehbaz said.

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