Pakistan not controlling the flow of terror from the territory

Islamabad, Pakistan:

There seems to be no cessation of terrorism emanating from Pakistan despite the country facing economic and political turbulence, says a media report.

The case of Malik Faisal Akram, a British-Pakistani national who took four persons hostage at a synagogue in Texas in the US, is a fit one. Later, it surfaced that he had been radicalized in Pakistan in 2020, Islam Khabar reported.

On the other hand, despite claims of having controlled domestic terrorism to the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), Maulana Masood Azhar, Jaish-e-Muhammad (JeM) chief, continues to roam free in Pakistan spewing venom against the West and India, said the report.

The report stressed that Pakistan must be blacklisted as the country that has lied to the FATF about the activities of the JeM.

Citing the case of Malik Faisal Akram, the 44-year-old British national who had been radicalized in Pakistan in 2020, the report said that “this should not come as a surprise as it is a well-known fact that Pakistan is the jihadi factory of the world”.

Akram had been on the watch list of MI 5, the British internal intelligence service, as a “subject of interest” in 2020 and was investigated in the second half of that year after his return from Pakistan for six months, Islam Khabar reported.

It further reported that MI 5 interrogated him and even checked all his computers and other documents.

“Faisal Akram had been the head of the Islamic Centre, Reza Masjid on Rondell Street in London, where Muslims of Pakistani origin largely prayed. Faisal Akram had been based in Blackburn, Lancashire and had been branded as a ‘menace’ by the local police for expressing his desire to be on board in one of the planes that destroyed the World Trade Centre in 2001.

It also came to notice during the interrogation that Faisal had visited Pakistan eleven times between 2007 and 2020. He had also been a member of the Tablighi Jamaat and had been convicted three times in the past for various petty crimes in the UK,” Islam Khabar reported.

According to the report, the Faisal Akram case points to the larger problem of the internationalization of terror by Pakistan.

Recently, evidence emerged that Pakistan misrepresented facts before the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), about Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) leader, Maulana Masood Azhar, Islam Khabar reported.

It further reported that in October 2021, Pakistan told the FATF Plenary Session that the JeM chief Masood Azhar was untraceable and had been declared a proclaimed offender. This claim was soon proved false by the appearance of several write-ups by Masood Azhar calling for jihad.

“Reports of JeM leaders organising and attending conferences throughout Punjab (Pakistan) and other provinces, seeking recruits and funds, besides holding indoctrination and training camps have also cropped up in social media and the Pakistani press. On 19 September 2021, Azhar wrote an article criticising the media for circulating fake news instead of celebrating the Islamic victory in Afghanistan. On 29 December 2021, he called for jihad in the name of Allah,” Islam Khabar reported.

The US report on Terrorism (2020) had reiterated that terrorist groups targeting India, including the JeM and LeT, continued to operate from Pakistani soil. The report had also underlined Pakistan’s refusal to take action against known terrorists like Masood Azhar and the “project manager” of the 2008 Mumbai attack, Sajid Mir. The report notes that both these persons remained free in Pakistan, the report added.

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