Compliance of sanctions: UN body keeps Pakistan under watch; India claims credit

Despite China’s opposition, FATF to monitor Islamabad’s efforts against terrorism


Aditi Phadnis July 01, 2015
Despite China’s opposition, FATF to monitor Islamabad’s efforts against terrorism. DESIGN: NABEEL ABDUSAMAD.

NEW DELHI: The alleged evidence presented by India at the recently concluded Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meeting in Brisbane has prevented the removal of Pakistan’s name from the list of countries engaged in money-laundering and financing terrorism.

While China had tried to intercede by coming to the aid of its ally and friend, Pakistan even though it is not a part of FATF will now be monitored through a grouping called the Asia-Pacific Group (APG) on how it is implementing UN sanctions against funding of terrorist groups.

The FATF meeting was convened to choke funding to terrorist organisations, such as Islamic State (IS) and al Qaeda. India had contested Pakistan’s claims of taking action against terror groups and its financing cartels and syndicates.

Giving a point-by-point rebuttal to the documents of action taken submitted by Islamabad earlier, New Delhi alleged that Pakistan was still allowing its territory to be used for both money laundering and terror financing.

At its plenary meeting in Paris in February this year, the FATF had cleared Pakistan’s name from the grey list of terror financiers after three years. The body welcomed Islamabad’s ‘significant progress’ in improving its anti-money laundering efforts and combating financing of terror.

Noting that Pakistan has established the legal and regulatory framework to meet its commitments regarding strategic deficiencies that the FATF had identified in June 2010, the FATF also decided that Pakistan would work with Asia-Pacific Group on money laundering.

But in Brisbane, India claimed it placed evidence that despite Islamabad’s claims of freezing the bank accounts of Hafiz Saeed-led Jamaatud Dawa (JuD), the outfit was still operating through an offshoot named Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) and was involved in raising funds for Lashkar-e-Taiba.

The APG will now monitor and ensure Pakistan’s compliance of UN sanctions against terrorists as Islamabad is a member of the international body, officials said. The UN Security Council’s al Qaeda and Taliban Sanctions Committee oversees the implementation by member states of the three sanctions measures – assets freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo – imposed against individuals and entities associated with al Qaeda.

Published in The Express Tribune, July 1st, 2015.

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