In-depth Understanding of UNSC Sanctions Regime: Workshops highlight Key Aspects for Pakistani Counter-Terrorism Officials

9 September 2023, Islamabad/Karachi – Upholding its tradition of the past year, the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Country Office Pakistan organized two enlightening workshops on the United Nations Security Council (UNSC) Sanctions Regime. The events took place on July 17-18 in Islamabad and September 7-8 in Karachi. Partnering with the National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) and the Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), and with financial support from Global Affairs Canada, the workshops aimed to enhance the understanding of UNSC Sanctions Regime among the relevant stakeholders and their effective implementation in Pakistan.

The objective of these workshops was to provide a comprehensive insight into the UNSC Sanctions Regime, promoting a cohesive understanding and implementation across various Counter Terrorism Departments.

The first day of the July workshop commenced with opening remarks from Mr. Abdul Hameed, Director General CT, Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MOFA), setting a collaborative tone for the event. This was followed by the presentation, facilitating an overview of the UNSC 1267 & 1988 Sanction Regimes, the legal framework in Pakistan for implementing UNSC resolutions, and the process for implementation along with penalties for violations. The Financial Monitoring Unit (FMU) then offered a detailed exposition on the compliance of UNSC Resolutions, FATF Recommendations, the institutional framework, and recent amendments in the Anti-Terrorism Act (ATA), shedding light on the pivotal roles of the State Bank of Pakistan (SBP) and FMU in implementing the Sanctions Regime.

On the second day, in-depth presentations by the National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) focused on UNSC 1373, its implementation responsibilities, and the necessary administrative arrangements. The discussion further explored the role of home departments in implementing the 1373 sanctions regime, as shared by representatives from the Home Departments. They elucidated procedural frameworks, coordination with federal and provincial authorities, and the overall responsibility for the implementation of UNSC Act SROs for the enforcement of UN Sanctions.

A total of 38 (3 Females) participants from various Counter Terrorism Departments, including intelligence, law enforcement agencies, district intelligence units, and provincial prosecution departments, actively engaged in the workshops. Their diverse expertise and perspectives enriched the discussions.

During the closing ceremony, participants were awarded certificates and they expressed their gratitude for UNODC's efforts in organizing these workshops which significantly improved their understanding of the UNSC sanctions regime in Pakistan. These workshops acted as a conduit for enhanced comprehension and coordination among various stakeholders, making a substantial contribution to aligning Pakistan’s regulatory framework with international standards.