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Secret Pak order to seize Saeed assets

Hafiz Saeed

Pakistan's government plans to seize control of charities and financial assets linked to Hafiz Saeed, the suspected 26/11 Mumbai attacks mastermind Washington has designated a terrorist, according to officials and documents reviewed by Reuters.

If the government pursues the plan, it will mark the first time Pakistan has made a major move against Saeed's network, which includes 300 seminaries and schools, hospitals, a publishing house and ambulance services.

On Monday, some of the first directives from the proposed crackdown were put in place. All companies were prohibited from donating money to Saeed and outfits named on the UN Security Council sanctions lists. The outfits were banned from fund-raising activities in Islamabad, too.

A minister said the action was not being taken under US pressure.

The government detailed its plans in an order to provincial and federal departments on December 19, three officials said. Marked "secret", the December 19 document from the finance ministry directed Pakistan's five provinces to submit a plan by December 28 for a "takeover" of Saeed's two "charities", the Jamaat-ud-Dawa (JuD) and the Falah-e-Insaniat Foundation (FIF).

The US has labelled the JuD and the FIF "terrorist fronts" for the Lashkar-e-Toiba, a group Saeed founded in 1987.

The December 19 document, which refers to "Financial Action Task Force (FATF) issues", names only Saeed's two charities and "actions to be taken" against them. The FATF is an international body that combats money laundering and terrorist financing. Reuters

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