India calls Pakistan's move to ban Hafiz Saeed's JuD and FIF 'cosmetic response'

Pakistan's move to ban Hafiz-led terror outfits comes right ahead of a crucial meeting of FATF, an international terror financing watchdog.


NEW DELHI: A day after Pakistan banned 26/11 Mumbai terror attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed's Jamaat-Ud-Dawa (Jud) and Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF), New Delhi called it a cosmetic move taken under pressure. 

"Pakistan is scrambling to put together even this cosmetic response is evidence of the coordinated diplomatic campaign that India has undertaken across multiple capitals and in Delhi," top sources in told Zee Media.

Due to rising diplomatic pressure from New Delhi, “Pakistan is increasingly getting isolated globally and is acting in desperation to be seen as taking action," sources added.

In the aftermath of the Pulwama terror attack that killed over 40 CRPF personnel, India started a diplomatic campaign to isolate Pakistan. 

The ministry of external affairs has briefed envoys of over 30 countries from ASEAN, Africa, permanent and non-permanent members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) about Pakistan's involvement in the gruesome terror attack.

The source said, "Many countries have unequivocally condemned the Pulwama attack with a  number of them directly calling for JeM to be held accountable." 

On February 14, over 2000 Central Reserve Police Force (CRPF) personnel travelling in a convoy of 78 vehicles on Jammu-Srinagar highway was attacked by a vehicle-borne suicide bomber at Lethpora (near Awantipora) in the Pulwama district. The attack resulted in the death of at least 40 CRPF personnel and injured many others. Terror outfit JeM claimed responsibility for the attack and local Kashmiri youth Adil Ahmad Dar was identified as the suicide bomber.

Several wings of United Nations have also condemned the Pulwama attack and denounced Jaish-e-Mohammad's involvement.

Interestingly, Pakistan's move to ban Hafiz-led terror outfits comes right ahead of the meeting of Financial Action Task Force (FATF), an international terror financing watchdog, scheduled to be held in Paris on Friday.

India is likely to press for the blacklisting of Pakistan so that that action can be taken against the country, another official said. 

“This diplomatic campaign has seen a specific thrust at the United Nations with the Security Council's condemnation of the attack where India worked behind the scenes and at the FATF where a current review of Pakistan's status as a country sponsoring and abetting terrorism is under review," the source added

Pakistan was put on the grey list last year for financially supporting of terror. It now comes under financial jurisdiction with “structural deficiencies” in anti-money laundering (AML) and combating financing of terrorism (CFT).

Pakistan on Thursday reinstated the ban imposed on Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD), a UN-designated terrorist organisation led by 2008 Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed and its charity wing Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation.  A spokesman of the Interior Ministry said that the decision to ban these groups was taken during a meeting of the National Security Committee (NSC) held at the Prime Minister's Office, according to PTI.

Earlier, the two outfits were kept on the watchlist of the interior ministry.

The meeting, chaired by Prime Minister Imran Khan, reviewed the National Action Plan against terrorism in detail. Services chiefs and key ministers were in attendance. 

Earlier, the Pakistan Army has asked Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar and 26/11 Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed to lay low.

The country's military has asked the two internationally designated terrorists to maintain a low profile and avoid public appearances, sources told Zee Media.

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