World community must do more to clamp down on Pakistan’s terror funding
The Financial Action Task Force (FATF), the Paris based inter-governmental body that checks threats to the international financial system, has officially put Pakistan in the ‘grey list’ after the latter failed to establish that it took substantial measures to end terror funding. Apart from the ignominy Pakistan will face at an international level, the greylisting means it will be deemed high-risk for business and investment. This will have a direct impact on Pakistan’s already troubled economy, which needs an IMF bailout soon after the general elections are over.

However, Pakistan seems to be unaffected by the disgrace of being in the ‘grey list’. In a defiant move, Pakistan’s National Counter-Terrorism Authority lifted a ban on one of its major Sunni extremist organizations, Ahle Sunnat Wal Jamaat (ASWJ) and unfroze the assets of its chief Maulana Ahmed Ludhianvi. In the last few months, the banned terror group Lashkar-e-Taiba headed by Hafiz Saeed recruited terrorists in Kashmir to assassinate senior Kashmiri journalist and peace advocate Shujaat Bukhari. In Pakistan Hafiz Saeed, who also masterminded the 2008 Mumbai attacks, publicly held rallies, reiterating his commitment to cross-border terrorism in India. Additionally, the Jamaat-ud-Dawa, the parent body of Lashkar, also declared to field 265 candidates through a lesser-known registered political party Allah-o-Akbar Tehreek’s (AAT) in the July 25 elections.

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The world community has shown that it can clamp down on terror funding by placing Pakistan in the grey list. But it needs to do a lot more to force Pakistan to comply with international rules and norms against terrorism and terror funding. The Donald Trump administration, in particular, must take stringent action against Pakistan, which remains the biggest epicentre of terrorism globally.

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