Pakistan finally declares Hafiz Saeed a terrorist

Jamaat-ud-Dawa Hafiz Saeed

Jamaat-ud-Dawa Hafiz Saeed

A report states that a US-India joint effort is attempting to put Pakistan in the "grey list" of FATF under financing terror groups and money laundering.

Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and its humanitarian arm Falahi Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) were banned across Pakistan with their moveable and immovable assets being frozen under the amended Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997.

Last week, Pakistan changed anti-terror laws through a presidential ordinance to include Hafiz Saeed-linked JuD and FIF and other terrorist outfits on the list of United Nations proscribed groups.

According to Dawn, the provincial government has, on Wednesday, started the process of taking over seminaries and health facilities run by Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) in Rawalpindi.

Of late, Pakistan has been trying hard to please the global community by cracking down on terror organisations and individuals operating from its soil.

President Mamnoon Hussain signed the new ordinance paving the way for the government to proceed against suspected masterminds of the 2008 Mumbai attacks. Washington has designated Saeed a terrorist.

JuD is similarly listed by the United Nations as a terrorist group.

If Pakistan fails to clear the review, it could be placed in the FATF's "grey list", which would result in stringent checks on worldwide transactions, foreign investments and commercial lending.

The action against Saeed comes in the backdrop of a crucial plenary meet of an intergovernmental watchdog, scheduled to take place in Paris next week.

He declined to say what actions were being taken after the change, and analysts said it was unclear why it was needed when Pakistan is already a member of the UN. There were reports that Pakistan was likely to be grey listed this year for allowing terror groups to operate freely and raise funds despite being proscribed by the UN Security Council.

Intelligence gathered by Indian agencies and shared with the FATF at its plenary in June and then in November previous year stressed that Pakistan's action against terror groups was a "paper activity", devoid of any groundwork and was meant to hoodwink the worldwide community.

Saeed has repeatedly denied involvement in the Mumbai attacks and a Pakistani court saw insufficient evidence to convict him.

A FATF delegation had visited the country in February and reported that Pakistan had fallen short of the requirements by not promulgating legislation to stop money laundering and terrorist financing.

Soon afterwards, the Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan issued a notification to prohibiting companies from "donating cash to the entities and individuals listed under the UNSC sanctions committee's consolidated list, " which includes the Al-Qaeda, Lashkar-e-Jhangvi, JuD and Lashkar-e-Taiba.

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