Azhar is not missing: India to call out Pakistan at FATF
New Delhi, Feb 17: India will call out Pakistan for its Masood Azhar is missing claim. Pakistan has claimed the disappearance of the Jaish-e-Mohammad chief several times before the Financial Action Task Force.
Pakistan has sought the help of several nations to get off the grey list. It is expecting 12 nations to speak in its favour. On Azhar Pakistan said that it could not file an FIR since he could not be found.
However Intelligence Bureau officials tell OneIndia that Azhar is very much in Pakistan and lives under the protection of the ISI at Bahawalpur. He was in fact admitted to a military hospital at the time India hit a Jaish-e-Mohammad training facility at Balakot, the IB officer also said.
Meanwhile Pakistan is likely to remain in the grey list of the Financial Action Task Force. Pakistan is still not fully compliant of the 13 of the 27 actions and hence would remain on the grey list.
Top diplomatic sources however confirmed to OneIndia that Pakistan would however not be downgraded to the black list as of now. The FATF would review Pakistan's case starting today at the plenary in Paris. The plenary would be on until February 21.
The working group and plenary meetings of the Financial Action Task Force in Paris will assess the implementation of a 27 point action plan by Pakistan, which was placed in the Grey List. The plenary would be held between February 16 and 21.
In June, the joint group of the Asia Pacific Group in its assessment had found that Pakistan's compliance to act against 8 terror groups which include the Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar-e-Tayiba has been unsatisfactory. The report urged Pakistan to do more against these groups before the FATF comes up with its final decision.
The report states that stringent action should be taken against groups such as the Lashkar-e-Tayiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, their financial entities, Haqqani Network, Al-Qaeda and Da'esh.
In order to move out of the grey list, Pakistan would need at least 15 of the 36 FATF's members' votes. It would also require a minimum of 3 votes to keep itself out of the black list.
In April the FATF had asked Pakistan to implement a new set of constraints in its crackdown against terror funding, including documenting and regulating all gold markets.
In the past few months, Pakistan appears to have taken some action. While India considers that the action is only token, Pakistan is doing all it can to avoid being downgraded to the black list.
One key development in recent times is the UN listing of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief, Maulana Masood Azhar. The first action by Pakistan was to put his brother Rauf Asghar in charge of operations.
However, with the heat stepping up, Pakistan claimed that Asghar had been placed under arrest.
The FATF on the other hand had asked Islamabad to collect data of all gold markets and restrict the sale and purchase of gold items using cash. The watchdog has also demanded that the country ensure restriction on supply of gold and jewellery to banned outfits and terrorist organisations.
The FATF had urged Pakistan to collect data of all trusts operating across the country as well as their bank accounts on the district level. It has also asked the country to ensure regulation of thousands of registered trust organisations.