According to a press release issued by the Financial Action Task Force, Pakistan has successfully avoided the dreaded ‘watch-list’ in a ruling which has gripped the entire country in its fervor. It also mentioned the need for action against Democratic Peoples’ Republic of Korea while acknowledging Iran’s ongoing efforts against Anti Money Laundering and Terrorism Financing.
As mentioned earlier in our article, the FATF Plenary reached a decision today (Friday) in Paris, France. The release explicitly avoided mentioning Pakistan’s name in the ‘Jurisdictions with Strategic Deficiencies’. Pakistan’s diplomatic enclaves have been abuzz during the last few weeks as diplomats, ambassadors and ministers rushed to their strategic partners and friends to avoid any embarrassing outcome which had been forwarded by United States and United Kingdom.
The FATF Press Release highlighted the sympathies from Democratic People’s Republic of Korea ‘DPRK’ to terrorist activities in the region, in addition to the ongoing steps being taken by the Government of Iran to amend its Anti-Money Laundering and Counter Terrorism Financing Laws.
According to the outcome of the Plenary Meeting, “The FATF remains concerned by the DPRK’s failure to address the significant deficiencies in its anti-money laundering and combating the financing of terrorism (AML/CFT) regime and the serious threats they pose to the integrity of the international financial system.”
In addition to that the FATF also mentioned “given that Iran has draft legislation currently before Parliament, the FATF decided at its meeting this week to continue the suspension of counter-measures.” The FATF Plenary, however, on the other hand also directed Iranian Government to take further steps to fully address the situation, which include: adequately criminalizing terrorist financing, identifying and freezing terrorist assets, ensuring an adequate and enforceable customer due diligence regime amongst others.
The second FATF Plenary meeting held under the Presidency of Mr. Santiago Otamendi of Argentina took place in Paris 21-23 February 2018.
The topic has received widespread attention in Pakistan news after a series of confusing remarks by diplomats and ministers led to an embarrassing situation for Pakistan around the world.