India to ask terror finance watchdog to blacklist Pakistan: FM Arun Jaitley

Indian finance minister Arun Jaitley has said on Thursday New Delhi will ask the terror finance and global money watchdog make Pakistan stand on a blacklist of nations that fail to meet criteria of international standards in fighting financial crime.

The FATF (Financial Action Task Force) has already put Pakistan on its “grey list” of nations with improper controls over terrorism financing and money laundering.

But India wants Pakistan to be blacklisted, which would result in sanctions, Pakistan’s Prime Minister Imran Khan has said last month.

“We want Pakistan downgraded on the FATF list,” Jaitley told reporters, further adding the Paris-based FATF was also due to hold a meeting in mid-May, and that India would again raise the request to them, according to Reuters news reports.

India’s call came shortly a day after it claimed a “diplomatic victory” with the United Nations sanction committee designating the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist.

India’s foreign ministry has welcomed the listing of Azhar as “a step in the right direction to demonstrate the international community’s resolve to fight against terrorism and its enablers”.

While referring to Azhar, Jaitley said, “The core issue is that he has been declared an international terrorist.” He added, “He and his country now face the consequences of that.”

The UN‘ 1267 sanctions committee has on Wednesday designated JeM chief Azhar as a global terrorist, after China, reportedly, removed its objection to Azhar’s listing.

India has been long seeking this development since 2016, but the latest effort came post-Pulwama terror attack on February 14 in Jammu and Kashmir, that claimed the lives of 44 CRPF personnel. The suicide bombing was claimed by Pakistan backed and based JeM chief Azhar.

 

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