Hafiz Saeed masterminded the 2008 Mumbai attacks that killed 166 people. (File photo)
Pakistan must prevent terrorist groups from operating on its soil and prosecute top Lashkar-e-Taiba operatives along with its leader Hafiz Saeed, the US has said ahead of the Financial Action Task Force’s crucial decision on whether to blacklist the country.
Alice Wells, head of the US state department’s South and Central Asian bureau, also welcomed the arrest the top four leaders of Lashkar-e-Taiba /Jamaat-ud-Dawah in Pakistan. Pakistan’s law enforcement agencies on Thursday arrested the “top four leaders” of the banned LeT/JuD on charges of terrorism financing. The top four arrested terrorists have been identified as Professor Zafar Iqbal, Yahya Aziz, Muhammad Ashraf and Abdul Salam.
“As Prime Minister Imran Khan has said, Pakistan, for its own future, must prevent militant groups from operating on its soil,” Wells tweeted.
“We welcome news that Pakistan arrested 4 #LeT leaders. The victims of LeT’s vicious attacks deserve to see these individuals prosecuted now, along with LeT leader Hafiz Saeed,” she said.
Pakistan has a long history of catching and releasing terrorists operating from its soil. Wells’ remarks came as the FATF is set to give its decision on the country’s ‘grey list’ status.
Pakistan was placed on the grey list by the Paris-based watchdog in June last year and was given a plan of action to complete it by October 2019, or face the risk of being placed on the…