AFTER DIPLOMATIC ISOLATION PAK STARES AT ECONOMIC ISOLATION IN PARIS

Latest visits of Prime Minister Modi to Palestine, Oman and UAE have added to Pakistan’s Diplomatic Isolation. Prime Minister Modi received a massive welcome in these countries including conferring of highest Palestinian Grand Collar Award and signing of unprecedented multi-billion economic cooperation with UAE. These events have increased Indian stature and at the same time marginalized Pakistan, which is staring at the humiliation once again in Paris next week. 

According to a senior Pakistani official, the United States has put forward a motion before Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to place Pakistan on a global terrorist-financing watchlist of an anti-money-laundering monitoring group. The FATF is an intergovernmental body based in Paris which sets global standards for fighting illicit finance. A meeting of FATF member states is due to take place next week in Paris, where the organization could adopt the motion on Pakistan. If the motion is passed, it will straight away put Pakistan into economic disaster as it will become ineligible for any financial assistance or loan by any country of the world. Pakistani officials and Western diplomats say that being put on the FATF watchlist could deal a blow to Pakistan’s economy as it would make it harder for foreign investors and companies to do business in the nuclear-armed South Asian nation. If Pakistan is put on a terror watchlist it will be made to go through all the (extra) scrutiny and it can hurt the economy very badly. It would be harder and more expensive for Pakistan to borrow money from international debt markets if it was put on the FATF monitoring list. In addition to broader systemic concerns, this will also include Pakistan’s non-compliance with its commitments under UN Security Council Resolution 1267

Earlier also, Pakistan had been on the FATF watchlist from 2012 to 2015, which should be considered a matter of Monumental National Shame for any country. However, Pakistan continues to trudge along this dangerous path unmindful of serious consequences. The FATF had previously warned Islamabad it could be put back on the watchlist without further efforts to crack down on the flow of funds to militants.

In order to avoid a slap on its face, Pakistan has been quick enough to shoot an Ordinance

 

on 10 Feb proscribing JUD and FIF.  On Monday, Pakistan announced it had amended its anti-terrorism law to ban militant groups and organizations that are listed as “terrorists” by the United Nations, a move seen to be targeting those charities. Earlier also Pakistan has played these types of pranks. In December, Pakistan’s government drew up plans to seize control of Saeed’s Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation charities. Critics say previous such efforts have faded once pressure on Pakistan eased. Washington and the U.N. say JuD and Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation are a front for the Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) militant group, which Saeed founded in 1987.

Whether Pakistan is serious about the actions against its anti-terror stance; only time will prove. However, present actions of Pakistan appear to be a desperate fight against its economic isolation.

 

15 Feb 18/Thursday.                                                                                          sajiakhan.sk2016@gmail.com