Global watchdog to put Pakistan back on terrorist financing watchlist

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As part of its on-going review of compliance with the AML/CFT (countering money laundering and combating financing for terrorism) standards, the FATF identifies jurisdictions that have strategic AML/CFT deficiencies and according to reports in Indian media, a decision had been made to include Pakistan in the list.

It comes days after reports that Pakistan had been given a three-month reprieve before being placed on the list, which could hamper banking and hurt foreign investment.

The move was pushed by four nominating countries, the U.S., the U.K., Germany and France.

"The resolution against us was political and used to pressurise Pakistan..."

Meanwhile while addressing a workshop in Lahore earlier in the day, Ahsan Iqbal said the youth had a crucial role in economic development of a Country.

But the campaign proved insufficient and the group decided late on Thursday that Pakistan would be put back on the watchlist, a senior Pakistani official and a diplomat with knowledge of the latest FATF discussions told Reuters.

Pakistan was on the list from 2012-2015 and feared a return would deter foreign investment and hurt access to global financial markets.

The US motion was backed by Britain, France and Germany, to induct Pakistan into the so-called "grey list" of countries which are not doing any concrete work to curb terrorism.

The minister said Pakistan was included in the Countries where youth was in majority. Faisal said most of the concerns raised by Washington had been addressed in 2015, and Pakistan was still working to take more measures.

In the lead-up to the FATF plenary session this week, the government had taken control of three dispensaries run by Hafiz Saeed's Jamaatud Dawa (JuD) and the Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation (FIF) in a rural area near the capital.

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.

Talking to media representatives in Lahore, the minister said over the last four years, Pakistan had registered great successes in the war on terror. China stands to gain far more because of its economic and military relations with United States and India than Pakistan and expecting Beijing to come for our rescue every time we knock on their door as a liability doesn't help the so-called "deeper than the ocean and higher than the Himalayas", mutual friendship. He also suggested that the complex twists and turns of the votes at FATF suggests that certainly Pakistan, but also the United States now finds itself without too many strong allies at worldwide forums.

"Pakistan will need a loan to pay off its debt burden", Hyder said.

The FATF, an intergovernmental body based in Paris that sets global standards for fighting illicit finance, had previously warned Islamabad it could be put back on the list without further efforts to crack down on the flow of funds to militants.

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