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Pakistan’s efforts to exit FATF grey list reach ‘dead end’

Pakistan’s fight to get out of the Financial Action Task Force’s (FATF’s) grey list is increasingly becoming difficult, despite the support it has been getting from its all-weather friend China and the newly radicalized nations of Turkey and Malaysia. Islamabad’s efforts in this regard seem to have reached a “dead end.”

A top counter-terror official in New Delhi was quoted by <em>Hindustan Times</em> as saying (<a href="https://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/pakistan-is-trying-to-eject-from-fatf-grey-list-could-run-into-a-dead-end/story-bdbLLJX1mL6B8Ol2K8BC8H.html">https://www.hindustantimes.com/world-news/pakistan-is-trying-to-eject-from-fatf-grey-list-could-run-into-a-dead-end/story-bdbLLJX1mL6B8Ol2K8BC8H.html</a>), “It does appear that Pakistan’s efforts to exit the grey list have reached a dead end, not unless it takes substantive and not cosmetic steps to tighten control over terror financing over the next four months.”

Getting out of the grey list is predicated upon a couple actions by Pakistan: chalking out and enacting laws to counter terror; and, more difficultly, implementing those laws. “It is going to be unlikely that Pakistan will crack down on terror groups that the establishment has conceived, birthed and nurtured,” another official told HT.

He also said, “The UNSC 1267 Sanctions List has 130 names from Pakistan, which claims that it can locate only 19.”

The problem with Pakistan is that it has itself birthed and nurtured most of the terrorists and jihadist groups operating in south Asia. It is always difficult to act against one’s own children.

Further, the economy is tottering, which has made Prime Minister Imran Khan so unpopular that the Opposition has been emboldened to not only slam him but also his backers, the Army—something unprecedented in the country’s history.

Inflation is zooming. As Ateet Sharma wrote (<a href="https://indianarrative.com/world/inflation-crushing-pakistanis-financial-collapse-fatf-blacklisting-could-be-next-16475.html">https://indianarrative.com/world/inflation-crushing-pakistanis-financial-collapse-fatf-blacklisting-could-be-next-16475.html</a>) on October 9, “For the first time in the history of Pakistan, the price of wheat has touched Rs 2,400 per 40kg. As higher food prices continue to push inflation up, the country is staring at a massive wheat and flour crisis.”

Against this backdrop, it will nothing short of a miracle if Pakistan exits the grey list..