US ready to assist Pakistan: Alice Wells


Pakistan hopes to acquire US cooperation in next month’s FATF plenary to get off the grey list.

Alice Wells, the top American diplomat dealing with South Asia, has acknowledged Pakistan’s efforts for fulfilling the obligations of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), saying Washington stands ready to assist Islamabad in implementing them.

“We’ve been pleased to see progress by Pakistan towards fulfilling FATF obligations,” The Express Tribune quoted Wells as saying on Saturday in Washington where she briefed the media about her recent trip to Pakistan, India and Sri Lanka.

Asked about Foreign Minister Shah Mehmood Qureshi’s request for US help to remove Pakistan from the global financial watchdog’s grey list, Wells noted that FATF was a technical process and an action plan had been presented to Islamabad.

“It’s a question of fulfilling the requirements that have been spelled out and that are asked of all countries in the international system. So it’s not a political process, but we certainly support and stand ready to assist Pakistan as it implements these obligations,” she added.

Pakistan hopes to acquire US cooperation in next month’s FATF plenary to get off the grey list after a meeting of the Asia-Pacific Joint Group in Beijing this week was informed that Islamabad had addressed 22 points of its action plan.

In February 2018, the FATF had found serious deficiencies in Pakistan’s anti-money laundering and combating financing of terrorism regimes and gave Islamabad a 27-point action plan to exit the grey list.

Last October, it gave another warning to Islamabad to show full compliance by February 2020.

Now, the FATF plenary will take place in Paris next month and take a decision about Pakistan’s status on the grey list.