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Pakistan remains on FATF ‘grey list’, given time till June to implement full action plan

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Islamabad, Feb 25: Pakistan on Thursday remained on Financial Action Task Force 'Grey List', as there are "serious deficiencies" in checking terror financing and the country lacks an effective system to deal with it.

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After its meeting, Marcus Pleyer, president of the Paris-based FATF, said the deadline given to Pakistan has already expired and asked Islamabad to address their concerns "as quickly as possible".

There is serious deficiency on the part of Pakistan in checking terror financing and the country is yet to demonstrate taking action against the UN designated terrorists and their associates.

Issuing a statement, the FATF said "Pakistan should demonstrate effective implementation of targeted financial sanctions against all 1267 and 1373 designated terrorists".

Pakistan must complete three unfulfilled tasks and once it is completed, the FATF will verify and take a decision on its present status in the next plenary to be held in June.

The Paris-based Financial Action Task Force had placed Pakistan on the grey list in June 2018 and asked Islamabad to implement a plan of action to curb money laundering and terror financing by the end of 2019 but the deadline was extended later on due to COVID-19 pandemic.

In the last plenary held in October 2020, the FATF concluded that Pakistan will continue in its "grey list" till February 2021 as it has failed to fulfil six out of 27 obligations of the global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog that include failure to take action against two of India''s most wanted terrorists - Jaish-e Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar and Jamaat-ud-Dawah head Hafiz Saeed.

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Azhar and Saeed are most wanted terrorists in India for their involvement in numerous terrorist acts, including 26/11 Mumbai terror attacks and bombing of a CRPF bus at Pulwama in Jammu and Kashmir last year.

With Pakistan''s continuation in the ''grey'' list, it is increasingly becoming difficult for Islamabad to get financial aid from the International Monetary Fund (IMF), World Bank, Asian Development Bank (ADB) and the European Union, thus further enhancing problems for the debt-ridden nation which is in a precarious financial situation.

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