US designates 2 LeT leaders, front group as terrorists

New York, Dec 28 (IANS) The US government has designated two financial officers of the Lakshar-e-Taiba (LeT) who use Pakistan’s financial system to raise and move funds, and an LeT front organisation Al-Muhammadia Students (AMS) as a terrorists.

The Treasury Department announced Wednesday that it was designating LeT senior leaders, Muhammad Sarwar and Shahid Mahmood, as Specially Designated Global Terrorists.

Sarwar used the “formal financial system in Pakistan to raise and move funds on behalf of LeT,” it said.

In a separate announcement, the State Department described the AMS as an “alias” of the LeT and said that it was being added to the list of foreign terrorist organisations.

The Treasury Department said its Office of Foreign Assets Control (OFAC) “took action today to disrupt Lashkar-e Tayyiba’s (LeT) fundraising and support networks” by designating Sarwar and Mahmood as terrorists.

John E. Smith, the acting director of OFAC, said in a statement: “These two Lashkar-e-Tayyiba leaders are responsible for raising and moving funds to support the terrorist group’s operations. Today’s action not only aims to expose their activities, but also disrupts Lashkar-e Tayyiba’s financial network and ability to carry out violent terrorist attacks.”

The State Department said that since LeT was designated as a foreign terrorist organisation in 2001, the group has repeatedly changed its name and created front organisations. The AMS was one such group, which was founded in 2009 and and “is a subsidiary of LeT and has worked with LeT senior leaders to organise recruiting courses and other activities for youth”

(Arul Louis can be reached at arul.l@ians.in)

–IANS

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