US report again highlights Pakistan’s two-timing on terrorism
WASHINGTON: An annual US report on terrorism once again called out Pakistan's two-timing on terrorism, detailing the country's patronage of terror groups, but stopped short of citing the government or the army use of terrorism as state policy, or calling for punitive action.
Acknowledging that the Pakistani military undertook operations against groups that conducted attacks within Pakistan such as TTP, the 2014 country report on terrorism released on Friday bluntly stated that Pakistan "did not take action against other groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba, which continued to operate, train, rally, propagandize, and fundraise in Pakistan."
"Lashkar e-Taiba (LeT) and its alias organizations continued to operate freely in Pakistan, and there were no indications that Pakistan took significant enforcement actions against the group,"
the report said, continuing a practice of gently indicting Pakistan for terrorism without forcing compliance or punishing it.
Instead, the John Kerry-led state department has funneled billions of dollars in aid to what its own report in effect calls a terrorism-supporting state. Most recently, the Pentagon has given a nearly $1 billion arms package to a country many of its analysts say directs killing of American soldiers in Afghanistan.
In fact, the report went so far as to say UN-designated terrorist organizations continued to skirt sanctions in Pakistan "by reconstituting themselves under different names, often with little effort to hide their connections to previously banned groups, and the government does not prosecute 'countering the financing of terrorism' (CFT) cases."
Although Pakistan added some named groups to its proscribed organizations list, implementation of UNSCRs 1267 and 1988 on terrorism and its financing remained weak, it added, in a series of strictures against a country that many analysts have said is a practitioner of terrorism but which claims to be a frontline state against terrorism and its foremost victim. The report also ignored Pakistan's recently claim, ridiculed as bogus in most quarters, that India was responsible for violent insurgency in Baluchistan. A Pakistani delegation led by its foreign secretary which visited Washington recently with the pre-announced intent of bringing this to the notice of the Obama administration did not even utter a peep about it, suggesting such claims were made for domestic consumption. The US report said counterterrorism cooperation with Pakistan during 2014 was mixed, and Pakistan continued to deny visas for trainers focused on law enforcement and civilian counterterrorism assistance
. Pakistan's cooperation with the US on information sharing and law enforcement continues, but needs improvement with respect to kidnapped US citizens, it added.
Delays in obtaining Pakistani visas for training personnel have been an obstacle to counterterrorism assistance for security forces and prosecutors, including assistance planned through the department of state's anti-terrorism assistance program, most of which was redirected to other regional partners, it said. The report said India has deepened counterterrorism cooperation with the United States,
highlighted by a September 30 summit between President Obama and Prime Minister Modi where both sides pledged greater cooperation in countering terrorist networks and in information sharing.
The president and prime minister, it said, stressed the need for joint and concerted efforts against networks such as al-Qaida, LeT, Jaish-e-Mohammed, and the Haqqani Network and reiterated their call to bring perpetrators of the November 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai to justice. The report also said Indian officials have emphasized the government takes threats posed by ISIS seriously,
even though only a small number of Indians are believed to have been recruited into the organization. "Given India's large Muslim population, potential socio-religious marginalization, and active ISIL (ISIS) online propaganda efforts, there remains a risk of increased ISIL recruitment of Indian nationals," the report warned. Critiquing India's efforts to counter terrorism, it said plans were hampered by "poor interagency coordination and information sharing."
In addition, local police forces, led at the state level, have limited command and control capacity and suffer from poor training and equipment