Pakistan is upset. After certain media reports suggested that Saudi Arabia had voted against Pakistan at the FATF (Financial Action Task Force) plenary keeping it in grey list, the Arab nation has now reportedly denied Pakistan permission to hold ‘Kashmir Black Day’ on 27th October.
Diplomatic sources insist that Saudi Arabia has declined to permit our Embassy in Riyadh and the Consulate in Jeddah to hold programs regarding Kashmir Black Day on 27 October. It must be a facepalm moment for Shah Mehmood Qureshi if true.— Murtaza Solangi (@murtazasolangi) October 23, 2020
According to a tweet by Executive Editor of Pakistani media Naya Daur, the Saudi administration has denied Pakistan embassy in Riyadh and consulate in Jeddah to hold the Kashmir Black Day programs on 27th October.
On October 22, 1947, Pakistan-backed tribal raiders invaded Kashmir, breaking the agreement it had with Maharaja of Kashmir. In the wee hours of October 22, 1947, scores of Pakistani Pashtun tribal militias, in connivance with the Pakistani state and army surreptitiously crossed the border from Garhi Habibullah into Jammu and Kashmir and attacked the town of Muzaffarabad, which is till now illegally occupied by Pakistan. Documented accounts state that hundreds of women were raped and abducted, houses looted and men slaughtered on the streets.
On 26th October, 1947, when Maharaja Hari Singh signed the Instrument of Accession to India, the Indian Armed Forces were airlifted to the valley the very next day on 27th October. The Army launched an aggressive offence against the rampaging Pashtuns and stopped their march towards Srinagar. Pakistan observes this day, when Indian Armed Forces defended its very land from Pakistan’s invasion as ‘Black Day’.
This move comes days after Saudi Arabia, which Pakistan considers one of its close allies, had reportedly voted against Pakistan at FATF (Financial Action Task Force) plenary which kept the neighbouring country on grey list. There were multiple media reports wherein it was speculated that Saudi Arabia had voted against Pakistan which made the Pakistanis on Twitter fume.
Does Saudi vote against Pakistan in FATF????— Naila Mahsud (@MahsudNaila) October 21, 2020
Some Pakistanis were so triggered they referred to Saudi Arabia as ‘traitor’.
However, media reports in Pakistan later suggested that Saudi Arabia had no role in keeping Pakistan on the grey list. Pakistan government also released an official statement claiming that the reports are ‘false and baseless’.
Rejection of false media report on FATF.— Govt of Pakistan (@GovtofPakistan) October 22, 2020
Responding to media queries regarding role of Saudi Arabia in assessment of Pakistan’s FATF Action Plan, the Spokesperson categorically rejected the story circulating on segment of the media as false and baseless.#FATF @ForeignOfficePk
Pakistan government had on Thursday claimed this was a malicious propaganda against Pakistan and Saudi Arabia, a country with which it enjoys ‘strong fraternal ties’.
Pakistan greatly values its relations with the brotherly Saudi Arabia and firmly rejects such malicious propaganda. FATF will announce its assessment of Pakistan’s progress on the Action Plan and the future course of action after conclusion of its Plenary Meeting.#FATF— Govt of Pakistan (@GovtofPakistan) October 22, 2020
However, eventually Pakistan was kept in the grey list for FATF till February 2021. The global terror watchdog said that Pakistan failed to address six items out of its 27-point action plan to check terror funding. FATF President Marcus Pleyer said that Pakistan needs to do more to check terror-financing.
Pakistan, over the years, has managed to keep itself out of the FATF blacklist with the diplomatic support of countries like China, Turkey, Malaysia, Saudi Arabia and few other Middle East countries. However, because it has not managed to garner enough support, it has not been able to get out of the grey list.