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FATF to put Pakistan on greylist for terror financing

23 February 2018

As per reports by The Hindu, Pakistan claimed victory in the ongoing FATF meeting in Paris earlier this week, as a preliminary discussion in International Co-operation Review Group (ICRG) failed to build a consensus on putting it again on the watch list.

Earlier in the week China, Turkey, and the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC) were opposing the US-led move against Pakistan but by Thursday night both China and Saudi Arabia dropped their opposition.

Spokesperson of Foreign Office at his weekly news briefing in Islamabad has said that Pakistan has not sent troops to Saudi Arabia to become part of Islamic military alliance today, reported Radio Pakistan.

However, Islamabad claimed that it had foiled US-led efforts to ban 26/11 mastermind Hafiz Saeed's Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) and Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) from collecting charities after the country was granted a three-month reprieve by FATF.

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Pakistan on Friday dismissed Indian media reports that a global money-laundering watchdog has placed it back on its terrorist financing watchlist.

"The officials said the U.S. effort, which included pressure on the Saudis, raised the possibility of a fresh vote on action against Pakistan as soon as Thursday".

The move will make it hard for global financial institutions and banks to do business in Pakistan and it will also make it hard for Pakistani businesses to raise money overseas. The joint opposition against the United States motion came after Pakistan appealed for support, resulting in the country being given a three-month postponement of the verdict.

He pointed out that most of the concerns by the USA regarding deficiencies in anti-money laundering and combatting the financing of terrorism had already been addressed in 2015 when Pakistan was excluded from the grey list.

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"Grateful to friends who helped", the minister added.

Pakistan was on the FATF watch list from 2012 to 2015, then only on issues of money laundering. Khan said that Pakistan will be formally put on the list in June this year as it faced a major setback on the diplomatic front. In the final vote, only Turkey backed Pakistan, sources said.

"As a result of this inclusion, banks, other lenders and worldwide companies seeking to do business with Pakistan could rethink financial ties, putting a damper on its already struggling economy, the daily added".

The US State Department in 2014 had named the JuD as "foreign terrorist organisation", a status that freezes assets of the organisation under its jurisdiction.

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FATF to put Pakistan on greylist for terror financing