A Geo-Politik blog reports that Pakistan continues to protect Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) terrorist Sajid Mir, despite him being recognised as a terrorist by the Financial Action Task Force (FATF).
“This duplicitous game came to light in July this year when the US found out that Pakistan had approached the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) for Mutual Legal Assistance and not the US Department of Justice which had declared Mir as a global terrorist in 2011,” said Geo-Politik.
Sajid Mir, one of India’s most wanted terrorists, is a senior member of the Pakistan-based LeT, and is wanted for his involvement in the 2008 terrorist attacks in Mumbai, India. A series of coordinated attacks by ten terrorists trained by the LeT were carried out on multiple locations in Mumbai: the Chhatrapati Shivaji Terminus, Oberoi Trident and Taj Mahal Palace Hotel, Leopold Cafe, Cama Hospital, Nariman House, Metro Cinema, St. Xavier’s College, near the Times of India building, in a taxi at Vile Parle, and at Mazagaon, in Mumbai’s port area. The attacks killed approximately 170 people, beginning on November 26, 2008, continuing through November 29. According to the FBI website, six Americans were killed during the three-day attack.
According to reports, Mir was one of the primary planners of the attack, and directed preparations and reconnaissance, acting as a controller based in Pakistan. Following the horrific attack, the CIA Station Chief met with ISI Analysis Directorate Major General Akhtar, and presented him with charts and intercepted communications that verified the attack was carried out from Pakistan.
Major General Akhtar disclaimed any involvement in the assault. Pakistani Army chief General Ashfaq Kayani took a similar stance a few days later. Pakistan maintained its denial of involvement in the Mumbai assault during the following years, and, reportedly, even made an effort to conceal Sajid Mir’s name and the circumstances surrounding the incident. Mir was secretly detained in the Punjab province last month, and was later sentenced to 15 years in prison by a Pakistani court. An anti-terrorist court in Lahore convicted Mir, after finding him guilty in a case involving funding of terrorist activities.
In charge of overseeing the LeT’s external activities from 2006 to 2011, as per latest revelations, Mir planned and oversaw a number of terrorist attacks on the organisation’s behalf. In addition, between 2008 and 2009, Mir reportedly planned a terrorist assault on a newspaper publication and its staff in Denmark. Mir was charged in the US, in April 2011, for his involvement in the Mumbai attack. In accordance with Executive Order 13224, as amended, the US Department of the Treasury named Mir as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist on August 30, 2012. This classification has a number of effects, including the blocking of all of Mir’s properties and interests in property that are subject to US jurisdiction, and institution of a general ban on dealings between US citizens and Mir.
The Dawn newspaper reported citing a source that he was also fined PKR 4,20,000, and is serving his sentence in Kot Lakhpat jail. The FATF has removed Pakistan from the terror-financing watchlist as a result of his sentencing. As of now, Pakistan is on the Grey List of the watchdog for not complying with the parameters necessary to combat terrorism.
Meanwhile, China has once again held up a proposal to designate Sajid Mir as a global terrorist at the United Nations, which was introduced by the United States and supported by India. In September, China justified its decision to obstruct the US and India’s joint request at the UN to blacklist Sajid Mir, one of India’s most wanted LeT terrorists who are headquartered in Pakistan, by claiming that its conduct was in accordance with the applicable norms of the UNSC’s anti-terrorism committee. For his involvement in the 26/11 Mumbai terror strikes, the US had a $5 million reward set on Mir’s head.
The US had moved the proposal, and India co-described Mir as a global terrorist under the UN Security Council’s 1267 Al-Qaeda Sanctions Committee. After Abdul Rehman Makki, leader of the LeT and Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD), and Abdul Rauf Azhar, brother of Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar, Beijing has blocked an India-US proposal for the third time in recent months.
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