Narendra Modi US visit: In one of the biggest decisions by the Trump adminsitration today, Syed Salahuddin has been designated as a global terrorist, according to Republic TV. This comes close in the wake of former Pakistan envoy to the US Husain Haqqani saying, “I think President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Narendra Modi will probably lay foundations of a much stronger India and US partnership.” Pakistan is watching the situation keenly as close India-US ties will lead to a crackdown against its links with terror and hit funds flow from the US. Jonah Blank, senior political scientist explained, “This serves that in eyes of US, Syed Salahuddin is not merely terrorist active against India, but globally. This would have more impact if it had been issued a long long time ago, eg. back when he was leading terrorist movement in Kashmir.”
The action against the Kashmiri militant group’s 71-year-old head, whose original name is Mohammed Yusuf Shah, comes against the backdrop of upsurge in terror activities and recruitment in the Valley. The US decision, which was welcomed by India, marks a serious blow to Pakistan where he has been taking refuge for the last 28 years, allegedly with the help of Pakistani authorities. He is also the head of United Jihad Council, a conglomerate of several terror outfits like LeT and JeM which operate out of Pakistan and Pakistan-occupied Kashmir. The announcement came just a few hours before Modi’s meeting with Trump, PTI reports.
Here is what State Department said on its website:
Haqqani had thereafter added, “I think US has come to terms with reality that Pakistan’s and America’s policies, especially in relation to terrorist groups, don’t coincide.” Haqqani had thereafter added, “I think US has come to terms with reality that Pakistan’s and America’s policies, especially in relation to terrorist groups, don’t coincide.” Today PM Modi has met US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson and they discussed ways to boost Indo-US strategic ties. A short time earlier, US Defence Secretary James Mattis had also called on PM Modi. Just weeks ahead of PM’s visit to US, Tillerson had met Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar and said that the trip would strengthen the Indo-US relationship and help advance the common interest in fighting terrorism and promoting economic growth. Myra MacDonald, South Asia specialist and author of ‘Heights of Madness’ and ‘Defeat is an Orphan; How Pakistan Lost the Great South Asian War’, today tweeted this significant message: It’s symbolically significant to target Salahuddin, who unlike many others in the Pak jihadi infrastructure originally came from Kashmir.
Here is the full statement in text format:
Here is what the US State Dept note said:
Office of the Spokesperson
June 26, 2017
Department of State has designated Mohammad Yusuf Shah, also known as (AKA) Syed Salahuddin, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) under Section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which imposes sanctions on foreign persons who have committed, or pose a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism that threaten the security of U.S. nationals or the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States. As a consequence of this designation, U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with Salahuddin and all of Salahuddin’s property and interests in property subject to United States jurisdiction are blocked.
Mohammad Yusuf Shah, AKA Syed Salahuddin, is the senior leader of the militant group Hizbul Mujahideen (HM). In September, 2016, Salahuddin vowed to block any peaceful resolution to the Kashmir conflict, threatened to train more Kashmiri suicide bombers, and vowed to turn the Kashmir valley “into a graveyard for Indian forces.” Under Salahuddin’s tenure as senior HM leader, HM has claimed responsibility for several attacks, including the April 2014 explosives attack in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, which injured 17 people.
Today’s action notifies the U.S. public and the international community that Mohammad Yusuf Shah, AKA Syed Salahuddin, has committed, or poses a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism. Designations of terrorist individuals and groups expose and isolate organizations and individuals, and result in denial of access to the U.S. financial system. Moreover, designations can assist or complement the law enforcement actions of other nations.