The UN Security Council, under India’s presidency, has imposed global sanctions against the dreaded Pakistan-based Haqqani militant network and the group’s chief of suicide operations.

The Council’s Afghanistan/Taliban Sanctions Committee had yesterday added the Haqqani group and Qari Zakir to its list of entities which face an assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo.

The move comes the same day that the US State Department designated Zakir as a “global terrorist” and imposed financial sanctions against him.

The UN committee said the Haqqani network, which has been responsible for suicide attacks and targeted assassination as well as kidnappings in Kabul, is linked to al-Qaeda, Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan and Jaish-I-Mohammed.

On Zakir, it said the group’s chief of suicide operations for the Haqqani network is in charge of all operations in Afghanistan’s Kabul, Takhar, Kunduz and Baghlan Provinces.

He oversees the training of suicide attackers and provides instructions on how to construct improvised explosives devices.

India assumed the rotating Presidency of the UN Security Council for this month on Thursday.

The designation comes during Pakistan’s current membership of the UN Security Council. The UN sanctions list now contains 131 individuals and three entities.

Welcoming the move, US Permanent Representative to the UN Susan Rice said the UN Security Council action confirms the international community’s resolve to end the Haqqani network’s ability to execute violent attacks in Afghanistan.

“It also reflects the Security Council’s commitment to use and enforce sanctions against those who threaten peace in Afghanistan, in conjunction with a strong commitment to support Afghan-led peace and reconciliation,” Rice said.

She said the “powerful worldwide sanctions” would put all UN member states under obligation to implement an asset freeze, travel ban, and arms embargo on the Haqqani network and Zakir.

(This article was published on November 6, 2012)
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