As a delegation led by Pakistan’s economic affairs minister attempts to persuade the anti-terror financing watchdog, National Security Adviser Ajit Doval on Monday described the action being taken by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) creating a big pressure on Islamabad to act against terror.
Doval’s remark at a conference of police officers overseeing anti-terrorist operations comes even as the FATF meeting is underway to track steps taken by various countries to curb terror funding.
“One of the biggest pressures that have come on Pakistan today is because of the proceedings of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), it has created so much pressure on them that probably no other action could have done,” NSA Ajit Doval said.
The FATF is expected to decide whether to retain Pakistan in the watchdog’s “grey list” or downgrade its status to the “black list”. If Pakistan is put on the blacklist, it could entail extensive economic sanctions and impact a $6-billion bailout programme with the IMF. According to Pakistan media reports, Islamabad has had to reach out to friendly countries to stop any effort to place Pakistan on the FATF blacklist at the ongoing session.
Pakistan was placed on the grey list last year, and a string of assessments to monitor compliance with the watchdog’s terror financing standards have found that the country has failed to deliver on most components of a 27-point action plan.
Indian counter-terror officials have attributed action against terrorists in recent months to Pakistan’s anxiety to demonstrate that it was serious in the fight against terrorism. But there is concern that these steps might be temporary, particularly since Pakistan has a long history of catching and releasing terrorists operating from its soil.
Oct 14, 2019 14:37 IST