Pakistan tightens ban on Hafiz Saeed-led JuD, other terrorist outfits; matches its ban list to UNSC


ISLAMABAD: Under pressure from the United States, Pakistan last week quietly pushed forward an ordinance that would put terror group Jamaat-ud Dawa, led by Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed, on the list of banned terrorist individuals and organisations. Islamabad further endorsed the United Nations’ list of banned terrorist organisations by barring them in Pakistan as well.

The move spells bad news for several terror entities such as Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), Lashkar-e-Toiba and Harkat-ul Mujahideen, which are among the 27 banned outfits on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) list.

The amended Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA) ordinance, which goes into effect immediately, will see the assets of the banned organisations frozen.

The ordinance, pushed by President Mamnoon Hussain last Friday, was made public on Monday evening.“President Mamnoon Hussain last Friday quietly promulgated an ordinance amending the Anti-Terrorism Act, 1997 with regards to proscription of terrorist individuals and organisations to include entities listed by the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) — in a move that would end a longstanding ambiguity over the status of Hafiz Saeed-linked Jamaatud Dawa and Falah-i-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) by firmly placing them on the list of proscribed groups,” said Pakistani daily Dawn.

The development comes just days before a Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meeting is scheduled to take place in Paris.

“It was feared that FATF, under pressure from the US and India, would place Pakistan on its grey list, which in turn could raise the cost of doing international financial transactions for Pakistan,” reported Dawn.

On Monday, US President Donald Trump proposed a $256-million in civilian assistance and $80-million in military aid to Pakistan while unveiling the $4-trillion annual budget for the fiscal 2019 beginning October 1.

Earlier in January 2018, US President Donald Trump froze a $ 2 billion military aid to Pakistan for its inability to act on terror outfits on home soil. Later, Pakistan’s financial regulatory body Securities and Exchange Commission of Pakistan (SECP) banned Saeed-led JuD, FIF, LeT, as well as several other such organisations from collecting donations.