Will Challenge "Illegal Action" In Court, Says Hafiz Saeed After Pak Crackdown

Mohammed Ajmal Kasab stalks a railway station in Mumbai during the 2008 terror attack

Mohammed Ajmal Kasab stalks a railway station in Mumbai during the 2008 terror attack

Reacting to the government's move, a JuD spokesman said the action is an attempt to "appease the U.S and India". This decision was taken in the backdrop of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) meeting in Paris. The step was taken after Pakistan issued an ordinance, amending a decades-old anti-terrorism law, to allow authorities to act against outlawed charities, groups or individuals listed by the UN Security Council.

The US has labelled JuD and FIF "terrorist fronts" for LeT. Saeed has repeatedly denied involvement in violence, including the Mumbai attacks.

Pakistan banned two charities linked to Hafiz Saeed on Wednesday, just days before a global watchdog is supposed to vote on a US-backed motion to put Islamabad on a watchlist for failing to curb terrorist financing.

Under house arrest since January 2017, Saeed was released in November after a court in Pakistan rejected a government application to extend his detention under anti-terrorism laws, saying there was no evidence to support the application.

The bans on Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF) come amid calls from the United States and India to take action against Saeed, who they say was behind an attack on Mumbai in 2008 that killed 166 people.

Aslam said he did not have an exact number of offices and seminaries involved in the asset seizure but data was being compiled in all four districts of Rawalpindi division and he expected full details of the assets.

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"We've taken over all the JuD and FIF assets". The Balochistan government has stated there is no presence of JuD and FIF in the province and the Khyber Pakhtunkhwa government is yet to send its reply on the matter, he further said.

Pakistan's de facto finance minister, Miftah Ismail, told Reuters the FATF would consider a motion to place Pakistan on the list but the government was "hopeful" it could make its case to avoid it.

The action came after a high-level United Nations sanctions team visited Rawalpindi in January to review progress against groups and individuals banned by the UN.

"It's very serious issue and any negative report can lead towards initiation of process of imposing sanctions", said the official. "Pakistan's credit rating may be downgraded if FATF downgraded its ranking for Islamabad", said the official. "We are in touch with over 30 countries in this regard (to block the move)", he said.

The US and India are spearheading an effort to get Pakistan included in the watchdog's worldwide money-laundering and terror-financing "grey list", reports said. Pakistan had been on the grey list of FATF for three years from 2012 to 2015.

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