Sectarian terrorism in Pakistan witnesses huge decline in 2017

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Sectarian terrorism in Pakistan witnesses huge decline in 2017

ISLAMABAD: Pakistan has witnessed a visible decline in sectarian terrorism with reporting of only 14 incidents during this year as compared to 185 in 2012.

During last seven years, total 688 incidents of sectarian terrorism were reported, of which 70 were recorded during 2011, 185 in 2012, 127 in 2013, 176 in 2014, 79 in 2015, 37 during 2016 and 14 incidents in 2017.

Statistics issued by Interior Division regarding implementation status of National Action Plan (NAP) so far on Monday revealed that 1447 Uniform Resource Locators (URLs) and many websites of Proscribed Organizations (POs) against abuse of Internet and Social Media have been blocked under steps to dismantling communication networks of terrorists.

The URLs also included 213 related to proscribed extremist organizations.

With regard to dismantling communication network ofterrorists, the data showed that 98.3 million SIMs were blocked while Biometric Verification System (BVS) had been put in place for issuance of new ones.

The data said some loopholes in the system have been identified by National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) and Pakistan Telecommunication Authority (PTA) has been asked to address the issue.

Law Enforcement Agencies (LEAs) have registered 1373 cases and nabbed 2566 persons and sealed 70 shops to counter hate speech. Similarly, to counter misuse of loudspeaker, 18687 cases were registered and 19422 persons were arrested while 7479 equipment were also confiscated.

Regarding implementation about choking of finances of terrorists, the data revealed that total 919 Hawala/Hundi cases were registered and 1209 were arrested.  The recovered amount was Rs. 1490 million.

Moreover, the data showed that total 426 Anti-Money-Laundering cases were registered of which 136 were under investigation and 147 under trial. The number of arrests was 574.

Under the Suspicious Transaction Reports (STRs), the data revealed that 207 were received from Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU), of which 49 were converted into cases, 48 were closed and 110 were under inquiry.

A Counter Terrorism Finance Unit was also being established in the provinces while a draft bill - Anti-Money Laundering Act had been prepared.

About steps ensuring against re-emergence of Proscribed Organizations (POs), the data showed that there were 8,374 persons were on 4th Schedule ATA while 6949 accounts were freezed and amount freezed was Rs. 157 million.

Moreover, the data highlighted steps regarding registration and regulation of Madaris (religious seminaries) and revealed that provincial governments had undertaken geo-mapping of Madaris, on the standard parameters.

Moreover, two separate registration and data forms for madaris have been developed while committees under Federal Board of Intermediate and Secondary Education (FBISE) and Higher Education Commission (HEC) were formed for grant of equivalence degree awarding status to Wafaqs.

The data said the Counter Terrorism Force (CTF) was alsoestablished and their strength included 500 in Islamabad CapitalTerritory (ICT), 4,300 in Punjab, 728 in Sindh, 1,000 in Balochistan, 2,080 in KP, 168 in Gilgit Baltistan and 260 in Azad Jammu and Kashmir (AJK).

The data revealed that strict implementation of ban regardingglorification of terrorists on media was being enforced.

With regard to steps against religious persecution, the statistics showed that data collection is in progress and would be verified. After then it would be put for further action.

The federal cabinet has approved in principle recommendations of Federally Administered Tribal Areas (FATA) reforms committee under FATA reforms.             The data further revealed that visibility of armed militias and display of weapons were curtailed.

About steps taken towards reconciliation in Balochistan, the data showed that surrender and reconciliation/rehabilitation ofFerraris was under progress.

With regard to revamping Criminal Justice System, the datashowed that it pertains to provincial governments, however, NACTA has prepared a Package of Reforms.

The recommendations, approved by Minister for Interior, have now been submitted to Prime Minister office and provinces.

The data said Karachi Operation had achieved significant success by reduction in crime rates which included 98 per cent decrease in terrorism, 97 per cent decline in target killings, 87 per cent in murders and 82 per cent in robberies. Around 33,378 weapons were also recovered during the on-going operation.

The data showed that NACTA was also being further strengthened. Eleven Special Trial Courts were notified and cases have been transferred to them.