In weekly briefing, Foreign Office spokesman claims Islamabad has made ‘substantive’ progress on fulfilling remaining points of FATF’s Action Plan
Criticizing neighboring India for its “hegemonic and expansionist designs,” Pakistan’s Foreign Office on Friday stressed that Islamabad remained firmly committed to regional and global peace.
Addressing a weekly press briefing, spokesman Zahid Hafeez Chaudhri lamented that India’s “irresponsible actions” were endangering regional peace and security. He said that India had strained ties with almost all its neighbors, and urged Delhi to undertake a “serious course correction” to ensure regional stability.
On reports of disengagement between China and India after months of stand-off at their disputed border, he said Pakistan hoped the issue would be resolved in accordance with their bilateral agreements.
The spokesman also condemned the continued use of Afghan soil to target Pakistan’s military personnel and civilians. Noting that two such attacks were launched in February so far—on Feb. 2, 15 rockets were fired from Afghanistan into Pakistan’s Bajaur and on Feb. 11, terrorists fired 5 rockets on Bajaur, killing a child—he said that such “unprovoked incidents” were a source of grave concern.
Pakistan has taken up the issue with Afghanistan through relevant diplomatic and military channels, he said. “Pakistan has always underscored the need to use existing mechanisms, including Afghanistan-Pakistan Action Plan for Peace and Security to address all issues,” he added.
Chaudhri claimed that Islamabad had made “substantive” progress on the remaining items of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)’s Action Plan. “FATF had assessed Pakistan to have completed 21 of the 27 Action Items under the current Action Plan. In the remaining six partially addressed items, significant progress has been made by Pakistan, which is duly acknowledged by the wider FATF membership,” he said, adding that Pakistan was committed to fully implementing the FATF Action Plan.
FATF’s next plenary session is set to be held virtually from Feb. 22-25. It would decide Pakistan’s case after assessing the progress on the remaining items on the action plan. Pakistan has been on the FATF’s ‘grey list’ for deficiencies in its counter-terror financing and anti-money laundering regimes since 2018.