Pakistan concerned over motion to place it on FATF Watch List

Sophia Siddiqui

Islamabad

Pakistan has serious concerns regarding the United States’ motion to place the country on the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) watchlist, the Foreign Office said on Thursday.
During weekly media briefing FO spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal said the FATF is an international body that sets standards relating to combating of money laundering and terrorist financing.
“Such motions are aimed at hampering the economic growth of Pakistan,” he said.
The spokesperson stressed that Pakistan remains committed to combating terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and the ongoing terrorist-combating operations by the Pakistan military are proof of the country’s commitment towards combating this menace.
Also speaking in the Senate on Thursday, Minister of State for Finance Rana Muhammad Afzal Khan said Pakistan had strongly reacted to this move which is politically motivated. He pointed out that Pakistan has done more than any other country against money laundering and terror financing. “We have not only made legislations, but also confiscated properties of certain proscribed outfits.” He expressed the confidence that under the given the steps, the country will would not be put on the watchlist. He admitted that consequences of the motion are very dangerous as putting the country on the grey list will block investments and also hinder borrowings for development projects.
On India’s allegations against Pakistan, the foreign office spokesperson said, “Pakistan strongly rejects the allegations of certain Indian police and defense officials and media outlets in connection with the reported attack on Sunjwan camp in the Indian-occupied Kashmir.
Replying to another query, he said Pakistan and India face a fundamental dispute regarding the Kashmir issue, and other problems cannot be solved between the two countries “unless a political settlement of the Kashmir issue materializes. A particular segment in the Indian media [has] clear intention to malign Pakistan and whip up public frenzy; we hope the world community would take due cognizance of India’s smear campaign against Pakistan and the deliberate creation of war hysteria,” he added.The spokesperson said India’s rapidly growing nuclear programme poses threat to regional peace and stability and negates India’s claims of disarmament policy.He said Pakistan is never apologetic regarding its foreign policy and is fully committed to and capable of defending itself against any act of aggression.He said Pakistan does not support any move by foreign states to interfere in the internal affairs of Maldives and influence its upcoming elections.“Non-interference in the domestic affairs of other countries has always been the key principle of our foreign policy”, he said.
The spokesperson also offered condolences on the behalf of people and the government of Pakistan over the tragic crash of a Russian passenger aircraft, which resulted in the loss of 71 lives.

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