Wednesday, January 20, 2021

FATF’s Job Is To Support Pakistan To Counter Terrorism; Not Blacklist It – China

China has reemphasised its support for traditional-ally Pakistan and urged member countries of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to refrain from politicising the forum. The FATF has placed Pakistan in the grey-list for money laundering and terror financing.

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An official of the Chinese foreign ministry said Beijing disapproves of the politicisation of FATF as several countries are pursuing a political agenda against Pakistan.

“China stood with Pakistan and blocked any attempt to place it on the blacklist. We have made it clear to the United States and India that China cannot do this and it goes beyond the purpose of FATF,” Yao Wen, Deputy Director-General for Policy Planning of Asian Affairs, told a group of visiting Pakistani journalists in Beijing.

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He said FATF was not meant to blacklist any country and was supposed to help countries take action against terror financing. Yao said China recognises Pakistan’s efforts in pursuing its National Action Plan and has encouraged Islamabad’s anti-terrorism actions.

Referring to President Xi Jinping’s visit to New Delhi, the official said the premier had conveyed Pakistan’s concerns on occupied Kashmir to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi. He said President Xi had informed Indian PM Narendra Modi that Pakistan wants to resolve the matter via dialogue.

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Earlier, the Federal Minister for Economic Affairs Hammad Azhar has said that Pakistan will successfully implement all the 27 recommended targets set by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) by January 2020 to exit the grey list. The FATF is the global watchdog for money laundering and terrorist financing. Last Friday, the organisation granted Pakistan four months to fulfil its commitments to avoid being blacklisted. 

The minister has also said during a news conference with the officials of the financial monitoring unit that the country intends to establish a FATF secretariat to effectively coordinate between different institutions at the federal and provincial levels.  It will work under the ministry for economic affairs on the implementation measures of the FATF action plan. 

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