This a file photo of Masood Azhar. Photograph:( AFP )
The report mentioned that groups targeting India, including LeT and its affiliated front organisations and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) continued to operate from Pakistani territory
US State Department report on global terrorism revealed that Pakistan made "limited progress" on the most difficult aspects of its 2015 National Action Plan to counter-terrorism as it had pledged to dismantle terrorist organisations operating inside the country without "delay or discrimination".
The 2020 Country Reports on Terrorism, which was issued on Thursday (December 16), stated that terrorist groups continued to operate from Pakistan regionally.
The report mentioned that groups targeting India, including LeT and its affiliated front organisations and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) continued to operate from Pakistani territory.
The report specifically mentioned that Pakistan did not take action against JeM founder and UN-designated terrorist Masood Azhar and 2008 Mumbai attack "project manager" Sajid Mir. As per the report, both are believed to remain free in Pakistan.
Although, the report does mention that Pakistan contributed to the Afghanistan peace process. Pakistan made additional progress in 2020 toward completing its Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Action Plan. However, the country remained on the FATF "gray list" as it did not complete all Action Plan items.
The report also highlighted the functioning of some madrassas in Pakistan, which has remained a matter of discussion over the years. The report stated that such that some unregulated madrassas continued to teach violent extremist doctrine.
"While the government continued efforts to increase madrassa regulation, some analysts and madrassa reform proponents observed that many madrassas failed to register with the government, provide documentation of their sources of funding, or comply with laws governing acceptance of foreign students," a part of the report read.
On the release of the report, US Secretary of State Antony Blinken said, "The report's Annex of Statistical Info shows that both the number of terrorist attacks and overall number of fatalities resulting from those attacks increased by more than 10% in 2020 compared with 2019."
Indian counterterrorism forces
Mentioning the Indian counterterrorism forces, such as the National Investigation Agency (NIA), the report commended India for actively detecting and disrupting transnational and regional terror forces.
"Indian counterterrorism forces, at the federal and state levels, actively detected and disrupted transnational and regional terror forces," the report read.
"The National Investigation Agency (NIA) examined 34 terrorism-related cases related to ISIS and arrested 160 persons, including 10 alleged al-Qaeda operatives from Kerala and West Bengal, in September,"? the report added.
Mentioning the cooperation with India, the report stated that the United States continues to build strategic partnerships with India. Through bilateral engagements such as the 17th Counterterrorism Joint Working Group and Third Designations Dialogue in September, as well as the third 2+2 Ministerial Dialogue in October.
Overall, the report stated that during 2020, the United States and its partners made significant major strides against terrorist organisations. It added that the terrorism threat has become more geographically dispersed in regions around the world.