“US Slaps Sanctions on Haqqani Network Suicide Operations Chief”

November 6, 2012

The Wall Street Journal on November 5, 2012 released the following:

“By Samuel Rubenfeld

The U.S. State Department said Monday it placed sanctions on Qari Zakir, the Haqqani Network’s chief of suicide operations.

In addition to the U.S. designation, the United Nations placed Zakir and the Haqqani Network itself on its blacklist, requiring member states to implement an asset freeze, travel ban and arms embargo on both him and the group.

“Today’s U.N. actions demonstrate international resolve in eliminating the Haqqani Network’s ability to execute violent attacks in Afghanistan,” the State Department said in a statement.

The U.S. State Department placed the Haqqani Network on its list of foreign terror organizations in September after years of deliberation. Until then, the U.S. had focused its efforts targeting individual members of the group.

The Haqqani Network, dubbed “the Sopranos of the Afghanistan war” by the New York Times, built an empire out of kidnapping, extortion, smuggling and trucking.

Zakir, along with his role as chief of suicide operations for the network, is the operational commander in Kabul, Takhar, Kunduz and Baghlan provinces in Afghanistan, the State Department said.

He’s responsible for the training program, which includes instruction in small arms, heavy weapons and basic improvised explosive device construction, the State Department said. Since approaching leader Sirajuddin Haqqani in 2008 for financial assistance to expand the group’s influence in northern Afghanistan, Zakir has become a trusted associate and confidant of the group’s leadership.

Separately, the U.S. Treasury Department’s Office of Foreign Assets Control removed Mohammad Abd El-Hamid Khalil Salah from its blacklist. Salah, an Illinois man who filed a lawsuit in September against Treasury in Chicago federal court, said in court papers he was the only U.S. citizen residing in the U.S. to be placed under sanctions.

In the complaint, Salah said the designation made him was unable to purchase virtually anything from food to a bank account.

OFAC would grant him licenses that, in theory, allowed him to do things like get a job or housing, but because OFAC is the sole determinant of such abilities, he “survives, in other words, only at the sufferance of OFAC,” the complaint said.

A Treasury spokesman said Monday that while evaluating its response to Salah’s legal complaint, OFAC determined it was appropriate to remove him from the blacklist”

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
OFAC SDN Removal Videos:

OFAC Litigation – SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN Removal Attorneys

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

————————————————————–

International criminal defense questions, but want to be anonymous?

Free Skype Tel: +1.202.470.3427, OR

Free Skype call:

           Office Locations

Email:


Specially Designated Global Terrorist [SDGT] Entries Added to OFAC’s SDN List on September 7, 2012

September 10, 2012

On September 7, 2012, OFAC has added [SDGT] Entries to the Specially Designated Nationals List (SDN List):

The following [SDGT] entries have been added to OFAC’s SDN List list:

HAQQANI NETWORK (a.k.a. “HQN”), Afghanistan; Pakistan [SDGT].

“HQN” (a.k.a. HAQQANI NETWORK), Afghanistan; Pakistan [SDGT].

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
OFAC SDN Removal Videos:

OFAC Litigation – SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN Removal Attorneys

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

————————————————————–

International criminal defense questions, but want to be anonymous?

Free Skype Tel: +1.202.470.3427, OR

Free Skype call:

           Office Locations

Email:


U.S. Seems Set to Brand Militant Group as ‘Terrorist’

September 1, 2012

The New York Times on August 31, 2012 released the following:

“By ERIC SCHMITT

WASHINGTON — Risking a new breach in relations with Pakistan, the Obama administration is leaning toward designating the Haqqani network, the insurgent group responsible for some of the most spectacular assaults on American bases in Afghanistan in recent years, as a terrorist organization.

With a Congressional reporting deadline looming, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton and top military officials are said to favor placing sanctions on the network, which operates in Afghanistan and Pakistan, according to half a dozen current and former administration officials.

A designation as a terrorist organization would help dry up the group’s fund-raising activities in countries like Saudi Arabia and United Arab Emirates, press Pakistan to carry out long-promised military action against the insurgents, and sharpen the administration’s focus on devising policies and operations to weaken the group, advocates say.

But no final decision has been made. A spirited internal debate has American officials, including several at the White House, worried about the consequences of such a designation not only for relations with Pakistan, but also for peace talks with the Taliban and the fate of Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl, the only American soldier known to be held by the militants.

Perhaps the most important consideration, administration and Congressional officials say, is whether the designation would make any difference in the group’s ability to raise money or stage more assaults as the American-led NATO force draws down in Afghanistan. Several Haqqani leaders have already been designated individually as “global terrorists,” so the issue now is what would be gained by designating the entire organization.

An administration official involved in the debate, who declined to speak on the record because of the continuing decision-making process, said, “The optics of designating look great, and the chest-thumping is an understandable expression of sentiment, but everyone has to calm down and say, ‘What does it actually do?’ ”

Mrs. Clinton, in the Cook Islands at the start of a trip to Asia, declined to discuss the internal debate but said she would meet the Congressional deadline in September. “I’d like to underscore that we are putting steady pressure on the Haqqanis,” she said. “That is part of what our military does every day.”

A National Security Council spokeswoman, Caitlin Hayden, would not comment on the administration’s internal deliberations, but hinted in an e-mail on Friday at the White House’s preferences for using other means to pressure the group. “We’ve taken steps to degrade the Haqqani Taliban network’s ability to carry out attacks, including drying up their resources, targeting them with our military and intelligence resources, and pressing Pakistan to take action,” the e-mail said.

Critics also contend that a designation by the Treasury Department or the United Nations, or under an existing executive order, could achieve the same result as adding the network to the much more prominent State Department list, with far fewer consequences.

The internal debate has been so divisive that the United States intelligence community has been assigned to prepare classified analyses on the possible repercussions of a designation on Pakistan. “The whole thing is absurd,” said one senior American official who has long favored designating the group, expressing frustration with the delay.

The administration has debated the designation for more than a year, with senior military officers like Gen. John R. Allen, commander of American and NATO troops in Afghanistan, and many top counterterrorism officials arguing for it.

This year, bipartisan pressure in Congress to add the group to the terrorist list has grown. “It is well past time to designate this network as a terrorist group,” Senator Dianne Feinstein, the California Democrat who is chairwoman of the Intelligence Committee, said in July.

With virtually unanimous backing, Congress approved legislation that President Obama signed into law on Aug. 10 giving Mrs. Clinton 30 days to determine whether the Haqqani network is a terrorist group. If she says it is not, she must explain her reasoning in a report to lawmakers by Sept. 9.

On one level, the decision seems clear-cut. Since 2008, Haqqani suicide attackers in Afghanistan have struck the Indian Embassy, hotels and restaurants and the headquarters of the NATO-led International Security Assistance Force and the American Embassy.

A recent report by the Combating Terrorism Center at West Point described how the Haqqani network had evolved into a “sophisticated, diverse and transnational crime network.”

In a paper for the Heritage Foundation, Lisa Curtis, a senior research fellow at the foundation and a former C.I.A. analyst on South Asia, said, “The U.S. should stand by its counterterrorism principles and identify this deadly terrorist organization for what it is.”

American officials confirmed this week that a senior member of the Haqqani family leadership, Badruddin Haqqani, the network’s operational commander, was killed last week in a drone strike in Pakistan’s tribal areas.

Opponents cite several reasons that designating the Haqqani network a terrorist organization could further complicate relations between the United States and Pakistan, just as relations are getting back on track after months of grueling negotiations that finally reopened NATO supply routes through Pakistan.

One reason, officials said, is that such a move would seem to bring Pakistan a step closer to being designated as a state sponsor of terrorism. American officials say the Pakistani military’s Inter-Services Intelligence Directorate is covertly aiding the insurgents. Pakistani officials have said that the agency maintains regular contact with the Haqqanis, but deny that it provides operational support. They contend that the Obama administration is trying to deflect attention from its own failings in Afghanistan.

In his meetings at the Central Intelligence Agency in early August, Pakistan’s new spy chief, Lt. Gen. Zahir ul-Islam, told the C.I.A. director, David H. Petraeus, that his country would not protest the designation, if it was given. Two other Pakistani officials said this week that the decision was “an internal American issue.” American analysts believe Pakistan would be reluctant to publicly protest the designation because to do so would substantiate American beliefs that Pakistan supports the Haqqanis.

Critics also voice concern that designating the Haqqani network could undermine peace talks with the Taliban and complicate efforts to win the release of Sergeant Bergdahl.

The main American effort to open negotiations with the Taliban remains centered on the talks in Qatar, where Taliban representatives are supposed to be opening an office. But those talks were suspended by the insurgents in March, largely over a delayed prisoner swap for Sergeant Bergdahl, held by the Haqqani network since 2009. The United States would have released five insurgents from Guantánamo Bay, Cuba, to win his release.

“A designation makes negotiating with the Taliban harder, and would add another layer of things to do to build confidence in order to restart negotiations,” said Shamila N. Chaudhary, a South Asia analyst at the Eurasia Group who was the director for Pakistan and Afghanistan at the National Security Council.”

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
OFAC SDN Removal Videos:

OFAC Litigation – SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN Removal Attorneys

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

————————————————————–

International criminal defense questions, but want to be anonymous?

Free Skype Tel: +1.202.470.3427, OR

Free Skype call:

           Office Locations

Email:


Insiders: Designate Haqqani Network a Foreign Terrorist Organization

July 17, 2012

National Journal on July 16, 2012 released the following:

“$16 billion in development aid pledged to Afghanistan is money well-spent, Insiders say.

By Sara Sorcher

A wide majority of National Journal’s National Security Insiders said the State Department should designate as a foreign terrorist organization the Haqqani network, the extremist insurgent group under the Taliban umbrella that takes sanctuary in Pakistan’s tribal area.

“Since the Haqqani network frequently targets and kills Americans in Afghanistan, not to declare it a foreign terrorist organization risks undermining the credibility and perceived objectivity of U.S. terrorist designations,” said one Insider among the 82 percent of the pool of national-security and foreign-policy experts who called for the official designation.

Bipartisan, bicameral legislation is pending on the floor of the House that would pressure the Obama administration into designating the network, which has launched spectacular suicide attacks on U.S. forces in neighboring Afghanistan, as a foreign terrorist organization. In November, the State Department said it was in the midst of a “final formal review” to determine whether the group should be designated as such. Some officials are reportedly concerned that listing the network could disrupt negotiations with the Taliban or upset already tenuous relations with Pakistan.

Bipartisan, bicameral legislation is pending on the floor of the House that would pressure the Obama administration into designating the network, which has launched spectacular suicide attacks on U.S. forces in neighboring Afghanistan, as a foreign terrorist organization. In November, the State Department said it was in the midst of a “final formal review” to determine whether the group should be designated as such. Some officials are reportedly concerned that listing the network could disrupt negotiations with the Taliban or upset already-tenuous relations with Pakistan.

With the Haqqani network believed to be responsible for last year’s high-profile attack on the Inter-Continental Hotel in Kabul, the truck bombing that injured scores of U.S. troops in Wardark, and the siege on the U.S. Embassy and NATO compound, one Insider said the havoc wreaked by the Haqqani network “unquestionably makes [it] a foreign terrorist organization…. Designating them as such would help tighten the screws on some despicable actors.”

“It’s time to call a spade a spade,” another Insider added. “If it looks like a terrorist group, acts like a terrorist group, and attacks and kills soldiers and civilians like a terrorist group, then it’s a terrorist group.”

Another 18 percent did not support listing the group, citing concerns about potential consequences for negotiations as the United States prepares to withdraw troops. “Negotiation is the only plausible way out of this. Yes, the Haqqanis are awful, and perhaps the threat of designation could be a useful bit of negotiating leverage with them or their Pakistani patrons,” one Insider said. “But a straightforward terror designation that complicates talks makes things worse, not better.”

On Afghanistan, 60 percent of Insiders said the $16 billion that countries pledged in development aid for the next four years in the name of security was well-spent—with a few caveats. “This will be well-spent if the proper strategic goals are pursued,” one Insider said. “If we think $16 billion will make Afghanistan a safe place for development of good governance and economic systems, that would be foolish. But if the international community is willing to continue to pay attention to this region, then the world will be better off with some form of regional stability rather than risk losing it from a neglected Afghanistan.”

Another Insider said the United States “made a huge mistake getting sucked into Afghan nation-building.”

“You can’t take a 15th-century tribal society and turn it into a modern 21st-century democracy. But we are where we are,” the Insider said. “The entire region is more unstable today than in 2003, and Afghanistan is in the middle of it. These funds are [the] best chance to encourage stability.”

Donor countries at the Tokyo conference earlier this month said their support depends on Afghanistan continuing to make progress in reducing corruption and poverty, improving governance, protecting human rights, and providing security. A portion of the U.S. aid could ultimately depend on Afghanistan meeting benchmarks for such reforms, but each donor could decide how to condition its individual contributions. “This money is well-spent only if the rhetoric about using it conditionally to create incentives for governance reform is real,” one Insider said. “It hasn’t been to date.”

Another 40 percent said the money would be better spent elsewhere. “That $16 billion will line the coffers of the highest Karzai government officials and all their cronies,” one Insider said. “The United States should send a strong message to Afghanistan that the corruption that riddles that government is simply unacceptable—and not worth a single American life.””

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
OFAC SDN Removal Videos:

OFAC Litigation – SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN Removal Attorneys

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

————————————————————–

International criminal defense questions, but want to be anonymous?

Free Skype Tel: +1.202.470.3427, OR

Free Skype call:

           Office Locations

Email:


U.S. blacklists two for alleged ties to al Qaeda, Taliban

May 18, 2012

Reuters on May 17, 2012 released the following:

“(Reuters) – The Treasury Department put two people that it alleged have ties to militant Islamist groups active in Afghanistan on a blacklist on Thursday and banned American citizens from any dealings with them.

The Treasury’s Office of Foreign Assets Control said Bakht Gul was a communications official for the al Qaeda-linked Haqqani Network, accused by the United States of involvement in attacks in Afghanistan, and that Abdul Baqi Bari was a money launderer for the Taliban.

Treasury said Bari funneled funds to support al Qaeda and that Osama Bin Laden, the al Qaeda leader killed in a U.S. raid on his hideout in Pakistan last year, had given Bari and an associate $500,000 to buy a factory in 2002.

It said Gul relayed reports from commanders in Afghanistan to the Haqqani Network, which is based along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, and had coordinated movements of weapons and insurgents.

Besides forbidding Americans from doing business with the two, Treasury said that any assets that they were found to be holding in the United States will be blocked.

(Reporting By Glenn Somerville; editing by Mohammad Zargham)”

————————————————————–

Douglas McNabb – McNabb Associates, P.C.’s
OFAC SDN Removal Videos:

OFAC Litigation – SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN List Removal

OFAC SDN Removal Attorneys

————————————————————–

To find additional global criminal news, please read The Global Criminal Defense Daily.

Douglas McNabb and other members of the U.S. law firm practice and write and/or report extensively on matters involving Federal Criminal Defense, INTERPOL Red Notice Removal, International Extradition Defense, OFAC SDN Sanctions Removal, International Criminal Court Defense, and US Seizure of Non-Resident, Foreign-Owned Assets. Because we have experience dealing with INTERPOL, our firm understands the inter-relationship that INTERPOL’s “Red Notice” brings to this equation.

The author of this blog is Douglas C. McNabb. Please feel free to contact him directly at mcnabb@mcnabbassociates.com or at one of the offices listed above.

————————————————————–

International criminal defense questions, but want to be anonymous?

Free Skype Tel: +1.202.470.3427, OR

Free Skype call: mcnabb.mcnabbassociates

           Office Locations

Email: