Published: Fri, February 16, 2018
Global Media | By Garry Long

Two Hafiz Saeed-linked charities banned from operating in Pakistan: Sana

Two Hafiz Saeed-linked charities banned from operating in Pakistan: Sana

Under pressure to act against banned groups, Pakistan has launched a crackdown on seminaries and health facilities run by Mumbai attack mastermind Hafiz Saeed, a media report said today.

Saeed, who had recently been released from house arrest, is also looking to contest the 2018 general elections in Pakistan and has, thereby, formed a party by the name of Milli Muslim League (MML).

Saeed, founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), has been designated a "terrorist" by the United Nations and had a $10m bounty placed on him by the U.S. in 2012. No officials from the charity were immediately available for comment.

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.

The move by Pakistani authorities came days before a key meeting by the Financial Action Task Force, a global money-laundering watchdog, that will consider a US-sponsored motion to place Pakistan on a list of countries failing to prevent "terrorism" financing, Reuters reported.

Saeed, who has a $10 million U.S. bounty on his head, has denied involvement.

It's the first step against Hafiz Saeed since he was freed in November on a court order.

Shot-down Iranian drone was copy of USA craft
After all, if the drone had not been over Israeli airspace, it would have been far harder for Israel to justify its actions. The military says it is "ready for various scenarios and will continue to act according to situation assessments".

Mr Aslam said he did not have an exact number of offices and seminaries involved in the asset seizure, but data was being compiled in all four districts of Rawalpindi division and he expected full details of the assets.

European Union ambassador to India Tomasz Kozlowski said that the European Union was cooperating "actively" with India to designate terrorists and to stop terror financing, but would not make a specific comment on the FATF meeting. The JuD and the Falah-i-Insaniyat Foundation, which are registered as charities, have chose to challenge the ban in court, with Hafeez Sayeed declaring that Islamabad was doing this under Indian pressure.

That would make it harder for foreigners to do business in the nuclear-armed South Asian nation.

It is feared that the worldwide body can take some punitive action against Pakistan, it said.

When asked about the Moscow meeting, Russian Ambassador to India Nikolai Kudashev told The Hindu last week that Russia's decision at the FATF would depend on "how weighty and substantiated the proof for Pakistan's involvement in financing terrorism will be", adding that " to corner Pakistan" was not Russia's policy.

The US and Britain put forward a motion several weeks ago to place Pakistan on the FATF's watchlist, the country's de facto finance minister Miftah Ismail told Reuters on Tuesday.

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