Pakistan was retained on the greylist, or list of states under “increased monitoring”, at the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) another time, because the Paris-based UN watchdog judged it deficient in prosecuting the highest leadership of UN Security Council-designated terror groups; the list includes Lashkar-e Toiba, Jaish-e Mohammad, Al Qaeda and also the Taliban.
Announcing the choice at the top of its latest Plenary session held virtually from June 21-25, the FATF said despite completing 26 of the 27 tasks it had been handed, Pakistan’s failure to finish the last task on convicting terrorists and terror entities meant it might not be delisted for now.
“The FATF encourages Pakistan to still make make address as soon as possible the one remaining Countering Finance of Terrorism (CFT)-related item by demonstrating that Terror Financing investigations and prosecutions target senior leaders and commanders of UN-designated terrorist groups,” FATF President Marcus Pleyer said.
During the FATF proceedings, Pakistan is believed to own provided documentation to indicate that it's prosecuted around 30 UNSC designated terrorists and their associates, charging them in 70 terror financing cases, of which convictions were granted in about 50 cases.
Those convicted on terror financing charges within the past few months include LeT chief Hafiz Saeed and operations commander Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi, who are wanted in India for the 26/11 Mumbai attacks. JeM chief Masood Azhar, wanted in India for variety of terror attacks, including the Pathankot airbase attack and Pulwama bombing, has been charged for terror financing, but not convicted yet. MEA officials have called most of the cases an “eyewash” ,pointing out that several of the costs and convictions were timed sooner than various FATF meetings.
India ‘politicising’ FATF process: Pakistan
Reacting to the FATF decision at a conference in Islamabad, Pakistan’s Energy minister Hammad Azhar accused India of attempting to “politicise the process” at the FATF.
“Whether [India] admits it or not, everyone at FATF knows that India’s goal is to create the technical forum a political one [by targeting] Pakistan. this is often something we've raised with FATF officials in Paris additionally,” he said.
The MEA failed toanswer Mr. Azhar’s accusation, but has within the past, dismissed all such charges.
In the weeks leading up to the FATF plenary, Pakistan had been fairly confident of being exempt the greylist during this session.
Unlike the following level “blacklist”, greylisting carries no legal sanctions, but it attracts economic strictures and restricts a country’s access to international loans, and Pakistan’s government minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi had estimated a loss of $10 billion annually to the Pakistani economy for each year Pakistan has been on the greylist. He had said earlier in the week that there was “no justification” for retaining Pakistan on the list, now that it had been adjudged compliant on 26 of 27 points.