FATF: Pakistan unlikely to exit “grey list”

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Pakistan is unlikely to exit the “grey list” of the FATF as some European countries have taken the stand that Islamabad has not fully implemented all the points of a plan of action set by it, a media report said on Sunday, on the eve of the plenary meeting of the global watchdog for money laundering and terror financing.

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 the COVID-19 pandemic.

The virtual FATF plenary will be held in Paris from February 22 to 25 to consider cases of various countries on the grey list, including Pakistan, and a decision will be made at the conclusion of the meetings, Dawn newspaper reported.

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.

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

An official source close to these developments told the paper on Saturday that Pakistan had complied with the six recommendations and also submitted details to the FATF secretariat.

The members would now evaluate Pakistan’s responses during the meeting, the source said, adding that the decision would be taken after a consensus among the members.

The paper, quoting a journalist covering the FATF said that some European countries, especially the host France, had recommended to the FATF to continue to keep Pakistan on the grey list and had taken the position that not all points had been fully implemented by Islamabad.

Other European countries are also supporting France, he said.

 

 

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