By : Al Bahits
For the past years, Pakistan has been very blatantly befooling whole world on terror financing, It was receiving money/aid from many countries in the name of eliminating the terrorists, but actually spent whole money for supporting the terrorists and using those terrorists as proxies in neighboring countries: India and Afghanistan.
It, not only supported those terrorists organizations financially, logistically, on moral grounds, etc., but also helped in establishing new outfits with a sole aim of terrorizing India and destabilizing Afghan Government. Some countries were very much aware on what Pakistan was doing, but they were turning a blind eye on Pakistan activities. They even sided with Pakistan arguing that Pakistan was going in the right direction in containing terrorism or it was itself a victim of terrorism.
With the passage of time, when those countries realized that the equation was going in some other direction and the strategic aims could not be achieved resting on Pakistan on one side and from other side, stiff resistance being faced by the NATO forces in Afghanistan, the shift could have been very easily seen, as the skepticism of world on so called bona fide intension of country like Pakistan, was deeply under question.
Their behind the scene financial supports, suddenly changed stance and they are now also trying to expose Pakistan for doing all miss deeds in destabilizing the region and promoting terrorism through various organizations. Pakistan was so over-confident with the continuous incoming of financial aids that neither it tried to enhance its economic standards and activities for nation building nor it could utilize the financial aid in the right direction.
Moreover, it diverted its own economic activities towards terror financing, strengthening of armed forces and buying new armaments. Everybody in the government, army and civilians, were filled with a hollow feeling of self-pride that they could contain certain countries with their mischievous designs with the help of those terrorists. Situation took a sudden change and some of those terrorists became unreliable partners and directed their guns towards Pakistani establishment, gibing a sudden and inexplicable jolt to their mentor (Pakistan).
The present situation is that there are many power centers in Pakistan: the army (ISI), terrorist organizations, the hardliners etc. The actual authority - the civilian government, is reduced to a mere puppet, asking for aids/donation from world bodies and other countries for the other power centers in Pakistan to subsist upon.
The terrorism financing by Pakistan was so intense that Pakistan has come under the notice of an international watchdog agency, Financial Action Task Force (FATF), based in Paris, France. This FATF is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 to combat money laundering, terrorist financing and other such activities threatening the integrity of International Financial System.
FATF has issued stern warning to Pakistan to take appropriate steps and swiftly complete the action plan to check and stop financing of all terror groups, by February 2020, or should be ready to face blacklisting. This would suddenly give a big blow to the staggering economy of Pakistan and above it, the image of the country and its people.
Pakistan is already in the "Grey List" of FATF. Pakistan got very stern warning from its all weather friend, China, when the current FATF President from China, Xiangmin Liu, warned Pakistan during the recent plenary session in Paris that Pakistan needed to do more and faster. Any failure to fulfill FATF global standards, would be take very seriously if by February, 2020, Pakistan did not make significant progress. It would lead to Pakistan's inclusion in the "Black List". With this, FATF has also sounded the international financial donors to make themselves ready for such action in February 2020, if Pakistan failed to comply with. There were 27 points in the list, but Pakistan could address only 5 points.
It is a matter of great shame and dis-honor for a country, Pakistan, that calls itself a sovereign state, but could not be able to save its face and honor in front of the world. The irresponsible and reckless behavior of Pakistan, put the self-respect and honor of its country people at the bottom. People of Pakistan are seen with great suspicion in the whole world and all Pakistanis know it very well.
There is unanimous decision now that there has been a complete lack of progress in addressing terror financing by Pakistan. Chinese Ambassador to India during an interview after the recent visit of Chinese President to India, stated that all countries had been urged to strengthen international co-operation in fighting terrorism.
Pakistan was placed in "Grey List" by FATF in June 2018 and was given a plan of action to complete by October 2019 or face the risk of being back listed.
In August 2019, Asia Pacific Group on money laundering (APG), a regional affiliate of FATF, had expressed concerns over Pakistan's performance and placed Pakistan in the follow-up list (Black List) for its failure to meet standards.
US Senator, Maggie Hassan, after meeting Pak PM Imran Khan and Army Chief Gen. Bajwa stated (October 2019) that Pakistan should end support to terrorist groups. She noted that Pakistan had an important role to play in stabilizing Afghanistan. She clearly mentioned that talks with Pakistani senior leadership were important to end their support to Taliban and other terrorist groups and prevent the spread of terrorist ideology.
But, China, Turkey, and Malaysia are not in favor of putting Pakistan into "Black List". China as ever, backtracking from what it says: a high deceitful step always taken by it. There is always a difference what it says and what it does. Pakistan fared very poorly in all the yardsticks of FATF-APG. According to a diplomatic source, chances of Pakistan coming of "Grey List", are very bleak and it is very likely to be places to "Black List". Once Pakistan is in "Black List", the international donors would re-think on their business relations and transactions with Pakistan. Pakistan's inclusion in the "Grey List", makes it difficult for Pakistan to get financial aid from International Monetary Fund (IMF), the World Bank (WB), and the European Union (EU), which has adversely affected its economy.
The reckless and shameless behavior of Pakistani leadership and army establishment is such that they are still taking it very lightly. It may also possible that they are not able to take themselves out of this situation, as they completely have become puppets of terrorist and radical organizations.