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Friday, December 9, 2022

US: have seen real progress forward in prosecution of militant leaders in Pakistan

The US has hailed Pakistan for acting against militant groups who espouse resistance in Jammu and Kashmir.

The US is concerned over the continued presence of militant organisations like LeT and JeM in Pakistan and is working with Islamabad to “encourage” it to fully dismantle and prosecute the members of such outfits, a senior administration official has told lawmakers.

According to a Congressional Research Service report, Pakistan is home to at least 12 groups designated as “foreign terrorist organizations”, including five of them being Kashmir-centric like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed.

Assistant Secretary of State for South and Central Asia Donald Lu told members of the Senate Foreign Relations Subcommittee on the Near East, South Asia, Central Asia, and Counterterrorism on Wednesday that the US remained concerned over the continued presence of these militant organisations in Pakistan.

“As a result of work that we have done with Pakistan, other partners have dealt with Pakistan, the Financial Action Task Force has done with Pakistan, we have seen real progress forward in prosecution of leaders of these groups, dismantling of some of these groups,… but these groups still remain,” he said in response to a question.

“And we are working with Pakistan to encourage them to fully dismantle and to prosecute members of these militant organizations,” Lu said.

He said India continued to report infiltration by militants into Jammu and Kashmir, although rates of it have reduced markedly over the past two years since the 2019 Pulwama attack in which 40 Indian soldiers were killed.

He said Pakistan has taken positive steps to address cross-border militancy.

“We continue to encourage Pakistan to prosecute militant leaders and dismantle all militant groups,” he said.

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