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Pakistan must take sustained and verifiable action against terrorists: United States

File photo of Hafiz Saeed. Photograph:( Reuters )

ANI Washington, United States Sep 28, 2019, 02.50 PM (IST)

The United States on Friday reiterated that Pakistan should continue taking sustained and verifiable action against terrorist groups operating on its soil to prevent future attacks and promote regional stability in the region in line with its international obligations.

This comes after the U.N. Security Council (UNSC) had approved a request by Pakistan to allow global terrorist Hafiz Saeed to access his bank accounts for 'basic expenses' to help his family.

"Basic exemption requests for U.N.-designated individuals are consistent with every member state's responsibilities regarding the disposition of funds to U.N.-designated individuals residing in their territory," a State Department spokesperson told ANI.

"We continue to encourage all member states to fully abide by and implement their obligations under UN sanctions regimes. This includes submitting basic exemption requests for UN-designated individuals and entities, as needed," the spokesperson said.

However, the spokesperson outlined that all member states are encouraged to take appropriate action to arrest and prosecute terrorists.
"In line with its international obligations, Pakistan must continue to take sustained and verifiable action against terrorist groups to prevent future attacks and promote regional stability," the spokesperson remarked.

In a letter dated August 15, the U.N. Sanctions Committee said it had received a letter from Pakistan seeking permission to allow Saeed "certain expenditure" from his frozen bank account. The Chair said that the request was approved after "no objection" had been received from any member.

"The chair has the honour to refer to his draft letter to the Islamic Republic of Pakistan communicating the committee's decision with respect to the intention of the Pakistani authorities to authorise certain expenditures to the benefit of Hafiz Muhammad Saeed (QDi.236), Haji Muhammad Ashraf (QDI.265) and Zafar Iqbal (QDI.308) to cover basic expenses, as specified in the note verbale of the Islamic Republic of Pakistan pursuant to paragraph 81 (a) of resolution 2368 (2017)," the letter read.

"The chair wishes to inform the members that no objections were placed by the set dateline of 15 August 2019 at 3:00 p.m. for the consideration of the draft letter. Consequently, the letter is approved, and the chair will instruct the Secretariat to dispatch it," it said.

Pakistan, which has time and again proven to be a safe haven for global terrorists, has based its request by outlining the monthly expenses requirement of Jammat-ud-Dawah (JuD) chief Saeed, who it claims, has to support a family of four.

Being a proscribed terrorist, Saeed is subjected to comprehensive economic and trade sanctions such as arms embargoes, travel bans, and financial or commodity restrictions.

Saeed, who has been designated as global terrorists by the United States, the United Nations, and the European Union, was the mastermind behind the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks that claimed 166 lives.