Another Pakistan based terrorist and leader of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) Noor Wali, also known as Mufti Noor Wali Mehsud was designated as a terrorist by the United States on September 11, the 18th anniversary of the ghastly attack on the twin tower by Al Qaeda, at the time when Islamabad has been facing the flak from FATF and the global community over terrorism.
The decision by the United States state department was taken to deny the terrorist group "the resources to plan and carry out attacks". This comes as a colossal setback for Pakistan, which has been repeatedly called out by the global socio-political community over its backing for terror organisations and has been concurrently facing the heat of FATF for its complicity towards terror groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) among others.
Along with the TPP, the state department also listed leaders of Hizballah, Hamas, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, ISIS, ISIS-Philippines and ISIS-West Africa. The department also designated an al-Qa'ida affiliate in Syria- Hurras al-Din-- as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist.
"The State Department is moving aggressively to implement these new authorities. Today, the Department has designated one terrorist group - Hurras al-Din, an al-Qa'ida affiliate in Syria - as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT)," the statement said.
"The Department has also designated as SDGTs 12 leaders of previously designated groups, including Hizballah, HAMAS, Palestinian Islamic Jihad, ISIS, ISIS-Philippines, ISIS-West Africa, and Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan. In addition to these actions, the Department of the Treasury has designated 15 additional terrorists affiliated with ISIS, ISIS-Philippines, ISIS-Khorasan, al-Qa'ida, HAMAS, and Iran's Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps-Qods Force under the same authority," the added.
The new order puts foreign financial institutions on notice that they risk sanctions if they knowingly "conduct or facilitate any significant transactions on behalf of designated terrorists".
FATF place Pakistan in the "enhanced blacklist" over the country's inaction against terror funding perpetrating from its soil. On September 9, a team from Pakistan was grilled in Bangkok wherein they had to answer 125 questions face-to-face thrown by the finance watchdog body. In a stern warning, FATF has asked Pakistan to expedite its action plan to curb terror financing by October or the country would be blacklisted, thus worsening an already crippled economy. The action by the US might adversely impact Islamabad case in front of the FATF.
Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, also identified as Pakistan Taliban is an alliance of the terror group. The terrorist organisation based in Pakistan has been responsible for carrying multiple suicide bombings, that killed hundreds of civilians. Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan was earlier designated as Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) by the Department of State.
Noor Wali was named as the fourth Emir (leader) of Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan on June 2008, following the death of the former leader Mullah Fazlullah. "Under Noor Wali's leadership, TTP has claimed responsibility for numerous deadly terrorist attacks across Pakistan," said US state department in a statement.
According to reports, Noor Wali has fought along with the Afghanistan Taliban against the US forces following the 9/11 attacks. He has also served as a military commander, leading the TTP in Karachi. The groups alliance with Al Qaeda and Afghan Taliban has kept them alive inside Pakistan. According to the United Nations, the Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan is responsible for "financing, planning, facilitating, preparing, or perpetrating of acts or activities by, in conjunction with, under the name of, on behalf of, or in support of, supplying, selling or transferring arms and related materiel to, recruiting for or otherwise supporting acts or activities of" Al-Qaida.
Under its second emir, Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan is responsible to carry out a suicide attack against US intelligence officers in Afghanistan, that killed seven CIA officers at the Forward Operating Base (FOB) Chapman in 2009. The first three leaders of the Pakistan-based terror group were killed by US drone strikes inside Pakistan and Afghanistan.