Workshop on UNSC Sanctions Regime helps participants understand key aspects of the Regime for Pakistan

Islamabad, Pakistan 28 September 2022 – United Nations Office on Drugs and Crime (UNODC) Country Office Pakistan, under its Country Programme-III (2022-2025) and Sub-Programme IV - Preventing and Countering Terrorism, conducted a workshop on United Nations Security Council Sanctions Regime from 26-27 September 2022 at Movenpick Hotel, Karachi. The event was jointly organized with Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MoFA), Ministry of Interior (MoI) and National Counter Terrorism Authority (NACTA) while the financial support was provided by Global Affairs Canada (GAC). 

The workshop brought together 25 (5 female) legal, financial intelligence and law enforcement officials from across 13 agencies to discuss Targeted Financial Sanctions (TFS) under the UNSC Sanctions Regime in Pakistan and facilitated an opportunity to share knowledge and tools on good practices for implementation of TFS regimes. Major aspects covered during the workshop included UNSCRs 1267, 1988 and 1373 sanctions regime; asset freezing under TFS and asset freezing as part of asset confiscation processes; and incorporation of TFS into broader AML/CFT national coordination and national strategies to counter terrorism financing.

The workshop commenced with the opening remarks by Mr. Mazhar Yaseen Wattoo, Joint Secretary Ministry of Interior, followed by Mr. Adnan Arshad, Special Secretary Home Department Sindh and Mr. Arsalan Malik, Head of Sub-Office UNODC. The speakers emphasized the need for enhancing coordination among criminal justice agencies for effective implementation of TFS. Mr. Umer Younis, Assistant Director CT, presented a brief overview of counter terrorism financing regime in Pakistan before delivering a detailed presentation on guidelines developed by MoFA for implementation of UNSCR 1267, 1988. The presentation covered a wide range of topics including sanction measures, legal framework in Pakistan, domestic application of sanctions, and responsibilities of provincial authorities in implementation of TFS. Representatives from Federal Board of Revenue and Financial Monitoring Unit (State Bank of Pakistan), during their presentations, briefed the audience on the role of their respective organizations in implementation of TFS under UNSC sanctions regime. Later in the day, MoI representative enlightened the participants on Mutual Legal Assistance (MLA) framework in Pakistan including the MLA Act 2020. The presentation also covered the importance of formal and informal international cooperation.  Final presentation of the day was delivered by Sindh Home Department on its role in implementation of FATF Action Plan with regards to proscription listings.

Second day of the workshop started with a presentation on upcoming MLA software developed by Punjab Information Technology Board (PITB) for concerned agencies to process MLA requests. Participants also learned about step-by-step procedures to be followed after receiving the MLA requests from host countries. Furthermore, they were apprised on actions required by authorities for implementation of UNSC Resolution 1373 following the guidelines developed by NACTA. A group exercise was also part of the day where participants were assigned to analyze a scenario-based case study related to financial investigations and prosecutions in context of CTF & TFS and then present their analysis based on findings from the case study.

Participants received certificates during the closing ceremony and expressed their appreciation of UNODC's efforts for organizing such workshops which helped them improve their understanding of UNSC sanctions regime in Pakistan.