New Delhi: Ahead of the Financial Action Task Force’s crucial meeting scheduled from October 12 to October 15, top four leaders of banned LeT/JuD have been arrested on charges of terror-financing, reported news agency PTI. The top four leaders of Lashkar-e-Taiba /Jamaat-ud-Dawah (JuD) arrested on Thursday have been identified as Professor Zafar Iqbal, Yahya Aziz, Muhammad Ashraf and Abdul Salam. In the meeting, it will be decided whether Pakistan will be on FATF’s grey list or whether it would be blacklisted.
The swift actions come soon after the Asia/Pacific Group on Money Laundering (APG) published its report on money-laundering and terror-financing in Pakistan revealing that the country has not done enough to curb terror-financing. According to the 228-page report titled ‘Mutual Evaluation Report 2019′, Pakistan scored low in nine areas and moderate in only one parameter.
The report said, “With the exception of some recent actions discussed in detail below, Pakistan has not taken sufficient measures to fully implement UNSCR 1267 obligations against all listed individuals and entities – especially those associated with Lashkar-e-Tayyiba (LeT)/Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), and Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) as well as the groups’ leader Hafiz Saeed.”
Pakistan was placed on the grey list by the Paris-based watchdog in June last year and was given a plan of action to complete it by October 2019, or face the risk of being placed on the black list with Iran and North Korea.
The Pakistani delegation, led by Minister for Economic Affairs Division Hammad Azhar, is scheduled to leave for France on October 13 as Pakistan’s case will be taken up on October 14 and 15.
The Pakistani authorities have insisted that they made a lot of progress during the past year. After the arrests, a spokesman for the Counter-Terrorism Department (CTD) said that there had been an “important progress” in the National Action Plan (NAP) as the main leaders of proscribed organisation JuD/LeT have been arrested by the CTD Punjab in offences of terrorism financing.
“JuD/LeT chief Hafiz Saeed is already in prison facing trial for commission of offences of terrorism financing. Now the entire core leadership of the JuD/LeT will be on trial,” the CTD said.
(With PTI Inputs)