USA | Pakistan | FATF | 21st July 2021 | Virtual Wire
The United States has stated that it recognises and supports Pakistan's ongoing efforts to satisfy FATF standards and that the latter has achieved "substantial progress" on the international regulator's original action plan approved in June 2018.
During a press conference on Monday, the US State Department spokeswoman made these remarks in response to a question regarding Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood accusing India of politicising the FATF to keep Pakistan on the watchdog's enhanced surveillance, commonly known as the grey list.
"Well, you're referring to Pakistan's obligations under the Financial Action Task Force, and we recognise and support Pakistan's ongoing efforts to meet those obligations," Price explained. "Pakistan has made significant progress on its first action plan, with 26 of 27 action items largely addressed."
"We will continue to cooperate with the FATF and the international community to quickly finish the remaining action item[s] by proving that terrorism financing, investigations, and prosecutions target senior leaders and commanders of UN-designated organisations," he said.
On June 25, the FATF said that Pakistan will stay on its enhanced surveillance list until it handled the last item on the initial action plan agreed to in June 2018, as well as all items on a parallel action plan issued by the watchdog's regional partner, the Asia Pacific Group, in 2019.
Analysts and observers speculated that the insertion of a new action plan alongside the old one, which Pakistan had fulfilled save for one agenda item, was a sign that the goalposts were being changed for Pakistan despite its high level of compliance.