In a U-turn, the Pakistan government rescinded its claim about the presence of fugitive terrorist Dawood Ibrahim on its soil on Sunday (August 23), soon after enlisting the latter among 88 designated terrorists in the country.
A Statutory Regulatory Order (SRO) by Pakistan’s Ministry of Foreign affairs on Saturday had named all UN-designated terrorists including Dawood, Lashkar-e-Toiba chief Hafiz Saeed, Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Maulana Masood Azhar, Pakistan Taliban chief Mullah Fazarullah and 26/11 accused Zaki-ur Rehman among 81 other terrorists. The order gave the address of the named terrorists and said they will be subject to assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo. The order was said to be an attempt by Pakistan to escape blacklisting by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
However, in a statement issued on Sunday, the Pakistan foreign ministry said media reports that claimed Islamabad of admitting to the presence of certain terrorists were “baseless and misleading.”
The ministry clarified that such SROs are published on a regular basis to adhere to international obligations and reflect information contained in the list entry of UN designated individuals/entities.
“The Ministry of Foreign Affairs issued two consolidated SROs on 18 August, 2020, reflecting the current status of the UN Taliban and ISIL (Da’esh) and AQ Sanctions list. These lists contain names of individuals and entities designated under the two sanction regimes established pursuant to the UN Security Council resolutions. The consolidated SROs are issued periodically as a routine matter. Similar SROs have been issued, by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs, in the past, as per statutory requirements to meet our international obligations. Last such SROs were issued in 2019,” the statement said.
“The SROs issued reflect information contained in the list entry of UN designated individuals/entities. The reports in certain sections of the media about Pakistan imposing new sanctions measures, through these SROs, are not factual. Similarly, the assertions made by some sections of the Indian media, as to Pakistan admitting to the presence of certain listed individuals on its territory, based on the information contained in the SRO, are baseless and misleading,” it added.
Dawood is an accused in the 1993 serial blasts in Mumbai and has been a most wanted terrorist in India. He is listed under serial no. QDi.135 and details of his passport numbers and address in Clifton, Karachi are mentioned in the SRO.