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How US convinced China to put Pakistan on the terror funding watch list

By Vicky

When Pakistan Foreign Minister, Khwaja Asif tweeted that his country had been given a three-month reprieve by the Financial Action Task Force, the message was clearly celebratory in nature.

When Pakistan Foreign Minister Khwaja Asif

However, in the 24 hours, that changed and the FATF decided to add Pakistan to the greylist from June 2018 onwards. Pakistan claimed the support of China, Turkey and Saudi Arabia.

However, when the decision was made, Pakistan's all weather friend China backed out only to support the resolution by the United States. Saudi Arabia too backed the US and Turkey was the only country that stood with Pakistan.

The change in standby China is what is interesting, considering the country had blocked a similar attempt during the Buenos Aires plenary of the FATF held in November last year.

To get China and Saudi on board, there was some hard bargaining done by the US. Sources in Delhi say that the US pushed hard and the Trump administration was adamant that Pakistan makes it to the greylist.

To get China on board, the US offered it the post of vice-president of the FATF. The VP of the FATF is also the president-designate. China was told that the post of VP could be occupied by its member starting July 1. After the deal was struck, China decided to pull out its opposition against Pakistan.

Saudi Arabia, on the other hand, was offered a full member of the FATF. The US decided to make it a full member starting July. Finally, it was only Turkey which backed Pakistan.

When Asif had posted the tweet, he was in Russia lobbying against the resolution. Sources believe that he spoke too soon and the public announcement did not find favour with Russia. This contributed largely to the mood against Pakistan, sources also added.

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