France Asserts to Provide No Concession to Pakistan on Terror Funding During FATF Meeting

CC0 / / Flag of Pakistan
Flag of Pakistan - Sputnik International
New Delhi (Sputnik): Pakistan is expected to be taken off the Financial Action Task Force (FATF)  grey list, as major powers including the US, UK, France, Germany, and even Japan appear to be in favour of Islamabad, due to the changing geopolitical equation in the region. 

A day after a possible reprieve to Pakistan from the terror financing watchdog's list, France has claimed that it would objectively evaluate steps taken by Islamabad during the FATF plenary session in February.

The meeting of the FATF's Asia/Pacific Group, which was held in Beijing between 21-23 January, analysed Pakistan's situation from a technical point of view.

"France is determined to continue combating money laundering and terror financing, and on this occasion (February plenary session), will objectively evaluate, without any concession, Pakistan's actions," a French diplomatic official said in New Delhi on Friday.

Pakistan will present another report on actions undertaken by the Imran Khan government for implementing the plan of action which was given by the watchdog in June 2019, and required the implementation of 27 actions, or face the risk of being blacklisted in February 2020.

On Thursday, the Chinese foreign ministry extended its full faith in the steps taken by Pakistan. "Pakistan has made great efforts to strengthen its domestic counter-terrorism financing system with visible progress. Its political will and active efforts should be recognised and encouraged by the international community," Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesman Geng Shuang said in Beijing on Thursday.

Not only China, but Islamabad had received support from almost all western countries. The Indian Express, Indian English daily citing diplomatic sources, reported: "There is a strong case against Pakistan since it was put on the grey list, but it was geopolitics at play- it seems the changing geopolitical environment helped Pakistan."

US  Pakistan flags - Sputnik International
Ex-Diplomat: India Must Flag Concern Over Likely US Support of Removing Pakistan from FATF Grey List
Pakistani Prime Minister Imran Khan has actively played the role of peacemaker during the recent Iran-US crisis and sent the country's foreign minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi to Saudi Arabia, Oman, United States and Qatar on efforts to defuse tensions and promote peace in the Middle East.

Meanwhile, US Acting Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asian Affairs Alice Wells, concluded a four-day visit to Pakistan where the two countries reaffirmed their resolve to continue to support the Taliban-US peace process. 

US President Donald Trump, during a bilateral meeting with Imran Khan in Davos, stated: "We are getting along very well. I would say we've never been closer with Pakistan than we are right now".

The statement is in sharp contrast to the January 2018 statement where Trump called US support of Pakistan 'foolish' since Islamabad had given the US "nothing but lies & deceit". Last month, the Trump administration also announced the resumption of military training for Pakistan, which was suspended since 2018.

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