Pakistan might not be off FATF gray checklist till June

Islamabad, February 17

PM Imran Khan-ledPakistan is unlikely to exit the Financial Action Task Force’s grey list until June, despite its efforts to garner support from the member nations ahead of the plenary meeting of the global terror financing and money laundering watchdog next week, according to a media report on Wednesday.

Unfulfilled obligations

  • In October last year, FATF ruled Pakistan would remain on grey list for failing to fulfil six key obligations
  • A senior Pakistani official says the country is not expected to be off the FATF list before June this year

The FATF’s Plenary and Working Group meetings, scheduled to be held from February 21 to 26 in Paris, is all set to decide on Pakistan’s grey list status. Pakistan was placed on the FATF grey list in June 2018 and given a timeline to address global concerns by implementing 27 action points. The FATF, during its virtual plenary in October last year, concluded that Pakistan would continue in its grey list till February 2021 as it has failed to fulfil six key obligations of the global money laundering and terrorist financing watchdog that include failure to take action against two of India’s most wanted terrorists — Maulana Masood Azhar and Hafiz Saeed.

Two youths booked for blasphemy

  • Two Christian youths have been booked for blasphemy in Pakistan’s Punjab province. They are yet to be arrested
  • The police said a complainant accused them of making objectionable remarks during a discussion on religion

According to a report in The Express Tribune newspaper, although Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi sounded optimistic about the outcome of the upcoming FATF meeting, officials admitted that Pakistan would remain in the ‘grey’ list at least until June.

“If agreed, the FATF visit will help Pakistan come out of the grey list by June this year,” a senior Pakistani official dealing with the matter was quoted as saying by the report. The Foreign Office has been inviting diplomats of FATF members to brief them about the progress on implementing the 27-point action plan,” the report said. — PTI

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