Pakistan: Getting Out of ‘FATF’ Grey-List

 The fact of the matter is that Pakistan has nothing to do if some of the Afghan officialsare doing their personal business by sellingthe aid-goods sent to their country,in the open market. It is the Afghan government that is responsible for the alleged ‘return journey’, not Pakistan.

by Ali Sukhanver

Hina Rabbani Khar, Pakistan’s Minister of State for Foreign Affairs, recently said in a news conference in Islamabad."Pakistan is one step away from exiting the grey list, God willing." Pakistan’s name is going to be removed soon from the FATF Grey List. According to the media details, though the Financial Action Task Force has yet not removed Pakistan’s name from the grey list but hopefully, as a result of strict measures taken by the government of Pakistan, the name would be excluded in near future. However, the FATF authorities have appreciated the steps taken by Pakistan for countering the alleged financing of terrorism. These authorities have acknowledged Pakistan’s sincere efforts in this regard. Pakistan has been on the list since June 2018. Unfortunately, this hopeful rather encouraging situation is not very much pleasing for our closest neighbour India. The Indian media, the Indian intelligence agencies and the mouth-pieces of the BJP on social media including Twitter, Instagram, Facebook and different WhatsApp groups, have started raising a painful and agonizing hue and cry on this expected achievement of Pakistan.

 Recently the Indian government has issued a dossier which is though a well-crafted document presented in a very impressive language but lacking any proof and any evidence. The dossier is nothing but a pack of lies, doing a futile exercise of fixing Pakistan in every act of terrorism. In the continuity of the same dossier, a few days back, a video clip of a self-claimed Indian Army officer was also made viral on social media in which he helplessly tried to portray Pakistan as a total failure state. Recently another childish move was also noticed when the Indian media blamed Pakistan of stealing wheat out of the Indian aid sent to Afghanistan via Pakistan. According to the ‘Print’ with reference to the Asian News International (ANI), the Indian humanitarian aid en route to Afghanistan was smuggled and hoarded by Pakistan, as the wheat consignments take a “return journey” after reaching Afghanistan.The consignment was sent to Afghanistan in the last week of May 2022. A pro-India news agency of Afghanistan the Khaama Press also reported the same thing on May 31st that the Taliban security officials in Helmand province prevented 50 wheat-laden trucks from unlawfully crossing the border to Pakistan.The vehicles were loaded in the company area of Helmand province’s Washir district to be taken to Pakistan; said the news agency. In short, from the Print to the ANI and from the Taliban security officials to the Khaama Press, all joined hands to spread this Fake-News.

The fact of the matter is that Pakistan has nothing to do if some of the Afghan officials are doing their personal business by selling the aid-goods sent to their country,in the open market. It is the Afghan government that is responsible for the alleged ‘return journey’, not Pakistan. The responsibility could have been levied upon Pakistan, if this process of transportation of goods was disturbed during the journey from Pakistan to Afghanistan. It is also a notable fact that India has committed to provide just 50,000 tons of wheat grain to Afghanistan, in instalments. The first shipment consisted of 4,000 tons of the grain, the next batch was of 2,000 tons sent in the month of March. Certainly the ‘huge’ quantity would take month and months in reaching Afghanistan but the whole quantity of this wheat would prove  ‘peanuts’ for the war-torn and hunger-stricken Afghanistan. Blame of ‘stealing’ out of such a meagre quantity in itself is a joke particularly when the containers were locked at Wagha border and shifted to Afghanistan under the eyes of supply contractors and ultimately opened by the Afghan authorities in presence of the UN high-ups. Moreover, it must also be kept in mind that the tribes living on both sides of the Durand Line have centuries-old family relations; they have inter-marriages; they own the same culture and follow the same traditions; boundary lines drawn on administrative needs could never separate them. By propagating such baseless allegations, the BJP government thinks that it would succeed in building a wall of hatred and misunderstanding between the people of Afghanistan and Pakistan which is certainly something next to impossible.

By getting involved in such stupid blame-game, the Modi Sarkar is simply trying to detract and divert the attention of the Indian nation from the very serious issues like growing voices in favour of Khalistan Independence, blasphemous remarks by Nupur Sharma and its aftershocks, the Killing of Sidhu Moosaywala, growing militancy in Kashmir, atrocities against the Dalits and other minorities and Christian’s protest on burning of Bible by Hindu extremists in Karnataka's Chitradurga district this June. Blaming Pakistan for all that goes wrong in India is a very old tradition of the BJP followers. Be it the cruel beheading of a tailor through BJP workers or the stabbing to death of a Hindu Vastu in Karnataka; Pakistan’s ISI seems always present there behind every scene. It is being analyzed that all such incidents are different forms of ‘False Flag Operations’ and their ultimate target is nothing but to defame Pakistan and prove Pakistan a terror-state. Surely such Indian efforts would gain more speed as the time of FATF scrutiny team’s visit to Pakistan comes closer. The only thing Pakistan needs is a strong determination to kick-off the heap of debris piled up by its ‘sweet closest neighbour’. In short it is the time for Pakistan to be very much alert, cautious, watchful and vigilant if it wants to counter and defeat all such childish conspiracies.