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Pakistan at risk of FATF blacklsit Envoy

Pakistan at risk of FATF blacklist: envoy
Indian envoy to Ankara says 'not sure' if Pakistan sincere on curbing terrorism
VakkasDoğantekin   |07.03.2019

India's ambassador to Ankara Sanjay Bhattacharyya holds a press conference at the embassy regarding the tension between Pakistan and India, on March 07, 2019 in Ankara, Turkey. ( MustafaKamacı - Anadolu Agency )


Pakistan may be blacklisted by an international terrorism financing watchdog if it does not abide by its commitments to take action against terror groups, the Indian ambassador to Turkey said Thursday. 
Addressing a news conference in capital Ankara amid escalating tensions between the two South Asian neighbors, Sanjay Bhattacharyya said the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) could blacklist Pakistan in its May review.

Last June, Pakistan was placed on the grey list of FATF, forcing the government to take critical measures.

Blaming Pakistan for a bombing in mid-February in Jammu and Kashmir that killed at least 40 Indian troops, he said India is "closely watching" Pakistan's steps.

Speaking about a recent crackdown by Pakistan on banned militant outfits, the envoy said: "There have been arrests of some 40 terrorists, all named in international sanctions list. We have seen the steps that they have taken. We do not want war but we shall fight terrorism.

"We are not quite sure if Pakistan is going to be sincere in continuing with these steps. Past precedent indicates that it does not. In the past we have seen that soon after detention or arrests of such people, they released them. It may be purely cosmetic."

Commenting on satellite images published by some media outlets claiming an alleged terrorist camp was not hit by the Indian Armed Forces (IAF) late last month, he said he did not have any "understanding of the material circulating".

"Our foreign secretary immediately after the preemptive counterterrorism strike has gone on record and said we have hit the target and I have no reason to say any other words. I go by with what the official reports are and we have hit the targets," Bhattacharyya said.

Indian jets entered Pakistan late last month to target a seminary run by Jaish-e-Mohammad (JEM), which claimed responsibility for the attack on Indian troops. Pakistan has banned JEM since 2002 but is accused by India of providing the group a sanctuary.

The escalations were further fueled by an air combat in which both sides claimed to have downed each other's warplanes.

The two South Asian nations have fought three wars in 1948, 1965 and 1971 -- since they were partitioned in 1947.

Bhattacharyya recalled that bilateral agreements with Pakistan such as the Lahore Declaration in 1999 and the Non-Nuclear Aggression Agreement in 1991 require an immediate freeze of assets, arms embargo and bans on terrorist groups.

Thanking Turkey on behalf of Indian authorities and people for condemning the terror attack in India, the envoy said the two countries "see each other as natural partners in the 21st century".

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