Pakistan today expressed serious concern about the move by some members of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to include it in the grey list ahead of the groups meet in Paris.
Foreign Office (FO) spokesman Dr Mohammad Faisal at the regular press briefing accused the FATF of changing the goalposts to target Pakistan after some of its members nominated Pakistan for the grey list.
Pakistan has serious concern over and objections to the introduction of this new procedure, which is unprecedented and in clear violation of established rules/practices of the FATF. Since 2015, time and again the goal posts have been shifted for reporting by Pakistan, Faisal said.
The letter was politically motivated and its real aim was to hamper economic progress of Pakistan, as it was initiated even before the completion of Pakistans Mutual Evaluation and designed to manipulate the FATF process, he said.
Pakistan was listed as grey in 2012 but was removed in 2015 after strenuous efforts to address the concerns of the group, Faisal said.
After the exit (in 2015), the FATF referred Pakistan to the APG (Asia-Pacific Group) due to residuary concerns regarding implementation of UNSCR 1267 sanctions on some entities (Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jamaat-ud-Dawa, and Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation), he said.
He said while the APG was analyzing Pakistan's report, the US and UK jointly submitted a letter to the FATF on January 20, nominating Pakistan for placement in the grey list. France and Germany subsequently joined this nomination.
Faisal said every country goes through a peer-based evaluation process called Mutual Evaluation for monitoring of compliance with the FATF standards.
Since Pakistan is not a member of the FATF, its Mutual Evaluation is conducted by the APG.
The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) was set up in 1989 with primary aim to set standards to combat money laundering but in 2001, its mandate was expanded to include countering terrorist financing. It can take action against any country by including a country in black or grey lists.
We have consistently maintained that Pakistans nuclear posture is purely defensive, in order to deter the aggressive designs of its hostile neighbour in the East, Faisal said.
He said the complete silence of the report on Indias ambitious nuclear programme and delivery system is really surprising and smacks of partisanship".
"Any credible threat assessment should have cautioned the world about Indias fast growing nuclear stockpiles and development of long-range delivery systems that have ignited a new arms race in our region," he added.
US President Donald Trump, in his first tweet of 2018, had lashed out at Pakistan for providing safe havens to terrorists and accused it of "lies and deceit" and of fooling US leaders while sheltering terrorists.
Unveiling his new South Asia policy in August last year, Trump had warned of tougher measures against Pakistan if it failed to cooperate with the US in the fight against terror.
(This story has not been edited by Business Standard staff and is auto-generated from a syndicated feed.)