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India to seek downgrading of Pakistan on terrorism financing list

There is a meeting of FATF in mid-May, said FM Arun Jaitley

Reuters 

Arun Jaitley
FM Arun Jaitley

India will ask the global money laundering and terror finance watchdog to put Pakistan on a blacklist of countries that fail to meet international standards in stopping financial crime, Finance Minister said on Thursday.

The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) already has Pakistan on its “grey list” of countries with inadequate controls over curbing money laundering and

But India wants Pakistan blacklisted, which would likely result in sanctions, Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan said last month.

“We want Pakistan downgraded on the list,” Jaitley told reporters, adding that the Paris-based was due to meet in mid-May and India would make its request then. The call came a day after India claimed a diplomatic victory with a UN Security Council committee blacklisting the founder of the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) militant group, Masood Azhar. His group claimed responsibility for a February suicide bombing that killed at least 40 Indian paramilitary police in the Indian-controlled part of the disputed Kashmir region, an attack that brought the nuclear-armed neighbours to the brink of war.

Pakistan’s ally China had repeatedly opposed efforts at the UN by Western powers to directly sanction Azhar.

Meanwhile, the Trump administration hit out at Pakistan’s military and said that Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan is saying the “right things”, but his military leadership too needs to take the “right decisions”, the Trump administration has said, hours after the UN Security Council designated JeM chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist.

Nearly 18 months after President Donald Trump ordered cutting off security aid to Pakistan, a senior US administration official told reporters that the US is trying to change Pakistan's policy of supporting terrorist groups.

First Published: Thu, May 02 2019. 14:30 IST
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