Friday, 30 September, 2022
HomeDiplomacyHow India-China crisis in Ladakh could impact Pakistan's fate at FATF meet

How India-China crisis in Ladakh could impact Pakistan’s fate at FATF meet

Virtual FATF plenary will take place from 21-23 October. China is expected to bat for Pakistan to come off ‘grey list’, while India pushes for blacklisting.

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New Delhi: India is “concerned” that during the upcoming plenary of the Paris-based Financial Action Task Force (FATF), China is going to up the ante in its support for Pakistan, and try to get it off the ‘grey list’, as a result of its ongoing tensions with India. But India is geared up for a “strong diplomatic push” to blacklist Pakistan, ThePrint has learnt.

The FATF plenary is going to be held virtually this time from 21-23 October, and India is preparing for a “dual challenge” it expects to face from Beijing and Islamabad, diplomatic sources said.

The plenary will take place at a time when India and China are engaged in a bitter stand-off in the Ladakh sector of the Line of Actual Control, the biggest escalation of tensions since 1975.

The FATF plenary is the highest decision-making body and meets three times a year — February, June and October.

Also read: Pakistan Parliament joint session passes 3 FATF-related bills to avoid being blacklisted

Pakistan on the ‘grey list’

Pakistan has been on the ‘grey list’ of the FATF since the June 2018 plenary, joining Iran and North Korea, when Islamabad was given a 27-point action plan, and a deadline of October 2019. But Pakistan could only fulfil five targets by then.

In October last year, the FATF had warned Pakistan that if it does not meet all the requirements, it will be placed in the category of “high risk” jurisdiction, also known as the ‘black list’.

Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan has said he’s been taking a plethora of initiatives to crack down on the terror network in his country. But India continues to maintain that Pakistan is still providing active support to dreaded terrorist organisations like the Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) and Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT).

In August this year, India’s National Investigation Agency (NIA) filed a charge sheet
naming JeM chief Masood Azhar, his brother Abdul Rauf Asghar and others for carrying out the 2019 Pulwama attack, in which 40 CRPF personnel were killed.

India has brought it to the notice of the FATF that the Imran Khan government issued two notifications giving details of the present status of 88 terrorists and their entities, including Dawood Ibrahim, Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) chief Hafiz Saeed, Masood Azhar and others, to the United Nations.

What’s likely to happen at the plenary

Now, China is trying to bring Pakistan out of the ‘grey list’, since it impacts foreign investments in that country.

“Clearly, China is going to play it out at the FATF this time, and already it has put considerable diplomatic weight behind Pakistan — that will save Islamabad once again from being blacklisted,” said an official who refused to be named.

India, meanwhile, hopes that the US will thwart China’s effort and let Pakistan be in the ‘grey list’. However, there is also acknowledgement that the US will not let Pakistan slip into the ‘black list’ due to the ongoing peace talks with the Taliban in Afghanistan.

According to the FATF norms, Pakistan has to meet at least 13 of the 27 parameters laid down by the watchdog to come out of the ‘grey list’. It would also need approval from 12 out of the FATF’s 39 members to exit the ‘grey list’, which it has not been able to get so far.

However, Pakistan needs only three votes to save itself from being blacklisted. According to sources, apart from China, it will also get support from Turkey and Malaysia.

Jayadeva Ranade, president of the Centre for China Analysis and Strategy and a former intelligence officer, told ThePrint, “China has come closer to Pakistan and its embrace of Islamabad has tightened ever since the stand-off with India. This was already building up since the surgical strikes, Balakot, and the abrogation of Article 370. But now the collaboration has gone deeper. China will now work harder to bring Pakistan out of the grey list, but in that it won’t be successful.”

Former foreign secretary Kanwal Sibal added: “The US will not let Pakistan get blacklisted and it will also get support from China, Turkey and Malaysia; thus its chances of getting blacklisted are very slim. But that does not mean India can stop making an effort. Rather, it should undertake more measures to ensure that Pakistan gets blacklisted.”

Also read: FATF’s grey list suits Pakistan’s jihadi ambitions. It only worries entering the black list


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  1. I appreciate your show and the extensive breakdown you bring in your show. But keeping in respect of neutral journalism, I would like to really emphasize that you should also acknowledge the fact that Pakistan under the leadership of Imran Khan where all the opposition was against the anti-terror finance and several bills to complete these tasks. Being a finance student and a Pakistani, I have personally experienced how hard the government has worked to cope up with such challenges and would really love to see that point of appreciation being raised as well with all the constructive critism coming in as well.

    Peace and love from your follower in Pakistan,

  2. It is a miracle how Pakistan has so much support from international countries that have been quick to ‘slam’ India so many times for taking actions in our internal matters.

    While Malaysia and Turkey are not of much concern except for clandestine funding of terror groups and NGOs abetting in terrorism in India, it is important to tread carefully with the United States. A plausible Democrat victory in the United States will have serious ramifications for India’s foreign policy; not only vis-a-vis its diplomatic pivot to the West but also across Asia.

    The first casualty of Biden-Harris would be The Quad. There is a high chance that Japan will be dissuaded from engaging with us in military cooperation and much of the Quad’s barb will be blunted. A Harris-led foreign policy will heavily lean towards China and anti-India elements, especially the radical Islamist factions, that form a crucial Democrat vote bank. Apart from political compulsions, Harris’ left-liberal, Baptist orientation is going to play a major part in shaping the incoming administration’s foreign policy in Washington.

    As the world heads towards a headless power struggle situation, it is crucial that the policymakers sitting in the MEA and ONSA start to marry India’s foreign policy with the national security outlook. This ought to have been done a long time back. However, better to be late than never.

  3. Modi should be held accountable regarding Indian land occupied by China rather than crowing about efforts against much smaller Pakistan !!

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