Daily Briefs

Photo : Dawn

Hammad Azhar, Pakistan's Minister for Economic Affairs addressing on action taken relating to terror financing

24 October 2019, Thursday

More than 700 terror finance cases are nearing conviction, says the government

Imran Khan agrees to allow the Azadi march by Fazlur Rahman; Fazlur Rahman meets the Chief of Army Staff; Imran Khan says army is behind him

PR Daily Brief | D. Suba Chandran

24 October 2019, Thursday

More than 700 terror finance cases are nearing conviction, says the government

The pressure from the FATF seems to be working. Hammad Azhar, the Minis­ter for Economic Affairs, on Wednesday announced that more than 700 terror financing cases that were initiated six months earlier are nearing conviction. He also stated that the cases are now with an independent judiciary, hinting that it is now with the latter.
There was a predominant expectation early this month, that Pakistan would be removed from the grey list by the FATF. While the FATF did not move Pakistan into blacklist, the former also did not remove the latter from the list altogether. Instead, the FATF has given some more time for Pakistan to take decisive action.


Insufficient action against terror financing has been one of the main problem area for the FATF to consider Pakistan’s case. Though the minister alluded to prosecution and conviction as the domain of the courts, there is a serious issue with the prosecution and also the capacity of the investigating agencies. Foolproof legal provisions to prosecute have been another issue. Without adequate legal mechanisms, the investigating agencies would find it difficult to build a case; and without a proper investigation, the courts will find it difficult to convict.

Pakistan will have to take adequate measures not only legally but also build capacity amongst the investigation agencies to build a case. The minister was also quoted stating on another important issue: “We are working on improving further inter-agency coordination to improve compliance.”


Imran Khan agrees to allow the Azadi march by Fazlur Rahman

Islamabad will witness the Azadi march of Fazlur Rahman, as the Prime Minister has agreed to allow the protesters to enter the capital. According to an official note from the Prime Minister’s Office: “It has been decided that the government with its firm belief in upholding democratic ideals will allow the proposed Azadi March if it takes place within the ambit of law and the Constitution as interpreted in the decisions of the Supreme Court of Pakistan and Islamabad High Court.”


However, Imran Khan has refused to accept the primary demand of the Azadi march: his resignation. He was quoted to have said: “I am a constitutionally elected prime minister and I will not resign…I am unable to comprehend their (opposition’s) insistence on minus-Imran [formula].” (Dawn, 24 October 2019)

Strangely, the Prime Minister also announced that he has not asked for the media from covering the Azadi march, or discussing about Fazlur Rahman in the electronic media.

If the government has not issued an instruction, who then has asked the electronic media from not covering Fazlur Rahman and the Azadi march?


Fazlur Rahman meets the Chief of Army Staff; Imran Khan says army is behind him

According to a report in The News, Fazlur Rahman met with Pakistan’s Chief of Army Staff (COAS) General Qamar Javed Bajwa and discussed the Azadi March. According to the report, the COAS informed about the regional security situation along the border on both sides of Pakistan. Apparently, the Army Chief also informed about the economic situation of the country, and also ruled out the idea of “minus-Imran” formula. (The News, 24 October 2019)


Separately, Imran Khan announced that the army is behind him and he is not willing to accept the demand of Fazlur Rahman.

If the above reports in the media is true, it is apparent that the Establishment is behind Imran Khan. Will Fazlur Rahman go against it?

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