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Pak-based banned extremist groups regain access to funding

Islamabad: Banned extremist groups in Pakistan, including Jaish-e-Mohammed and Hizb-ut-Tahrir, have regained access to funding after their front organisations began opening local and foreign currency accounts.

Intelligence agencies have compiled a list of banned ‘jihadi’ groups which have been opening new accounts in the name of their front organisations to receive funds from local and foreign sources, BBC Urdu reported.

The intelligence agencies have been monitoring the ‘jihadi’ groups that were blacklisted by the government.

The groups include Jaish-e-Mohammad, Hizb-ut-Tahrir, Ghazi Force, Jamiat-ul-Furqan, Tehreek-e-Islami, Millat-e-Islamia Pakistan and Khairunissa International Trust.
Interior Ministry sources were quoted by BBC Urdu as saying that reports from intelligence agencies showed that these seven banned groups had opened accounts in different banks.

The reports said people linked to these groups were using both local and foreign currency accounts.

Funds have been traced to several groups involved in terrorist activities.
The list also includes groups which appear to be engaged in social welfare activities. However, due to their links to extremist groups, they too are being blacklisted, the report said.

Intelligence agencies have expressed the fear that the extremist groups are again gathering momentum following the revival of their funding.

Those helping the banned groups include people who had assisted the organisations in receiving and transporting funds in the past.

After reviewing these reports, the Interior Ministry has alerted federal investigative agencies and related authorities to collect details of such accounts from different banks, especially those with large transactions and with foreign currencies.

Pakistani authorities have frozen the accounts of 24 banned groups, including the seven named by intelligence agencies in the report.

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