US Blacklists Retired Pakistan Cop Rao Anwar For 'serious Human Rights Abuse'

Pakistan News

The USA blacklisted retired Pakistan cop, Rao Anwar, for allegedly killing dozens during his term as Senior Superintendent Police in "staged" police encounters

Written By Ananya Varma | Mumbai | Updated On:

On Tuesday, former Karachi police officer Rao Anwar was blacklisted by the United States for "serious human rights abuses". The USA blacklisted Anwar for allegedly killing dozens during his term as Senior Superintendent Police in "staged" police encounters in which a number of innocent civilians were killed in Karachi. "The former cop was involved in over 190 police encounters that resulted in the deaths of over 400 people, including the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsood," according to the US Treasury Department. The US Department of the Treasury's Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) announced this decision on International Human Rights Day on Tuesday by imposing economic sanctions on his alleged engagement in human rights violations.

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Mehsood, who was murdered by Rao Anwar on January 13, 2018, was a young man from Waziristan region, who was killed in Karachi. A police inquiry later into the matter had established that the encounter was staged by Anwar thereby making it an extrajudicial killing. This had led to huge hue and cry and nationwide outrage after which it was picked up by a Pashtoon rights group during their rallying.

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"America is the world leader in combatting human rights abuse and it will not tolerate torture, kidnapping, sexual violence, murder, or brutality against innocent civilians," Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin said. The US Department of Treasury also alleged that the blacklisted cop had "helped lead a network of police and criminal thugs that were allegedly responsible for extortion, land grabbing, narcotics, and murder". He has now been labelled as being responsible for or complicit in or having directly or indirectly engaged in, serious human rights abuse, according to the Department. Rao has previously also been infamous for being one of the most controversial cops in Pakistan and had officially retired from service last year.

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(with ANI inputs)

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