US designates Pakistan’s Baloch separatist outfit a terrorist group

US designates Pakistan’s Baloch separatist outfit a terrorist group
In this Nov. 23, 2018 file photo, Pakistani security personnel move in the compound of Chinese Consulate following a deadly attack, in Karachi, Pakistan. Aslam Baloch, one of the leaders of the Baluch Liberation Army, blamed for masterminding the attack on the consulate has been killed in a bombing in Afghanistan, Pakistani officials and the separatist group said Thursday, Dec. 27, 2018. (AP)
Updated 03 July 2019

US designates Pakistan’s Baloch separatist outfit a terrorist group

US designates Pakistan’s Baloch separatist outfit a terrorist group
  • BLA has been banned in Pakistan since 2006
  • New listing will put sanctions on the funding and movement of BLA members

ISLAMABAD: The United States on Tuesday declared Pakistan’s separatist group, the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA), as a terror outfit, accusing it of “targetting Chinese engineers in Balochistan” and Gwadar terrorist attack.
“BLA has carried out several terrorist attacks in the past year, including a suicide attack in August 2018 that targeted Chinese engineers in Balochistan, a November 2018 attack on the Chinese consulate in Karachi, and a May 2019 attack against a luxury hotel in Gwadar, Balochistan,” a statement released by the US State Department on Tuesday read.
Reacting to the development, Pakistan’s Foreign Office (FO) said on Tuesday: “We have taken note of the designation by the US Administration of the Balochistan Liberation Army (BLA) as Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT).”
The statement by the FO added that the BLA remains a proscribed entity in Pakistan since 2006 and in recent times has carried out several terrorist attacks in the country.
“It is hoped that this designation will ensure that the BLA’s space to operate is minimized,” the statement said, adding that it is important for the perpetrators, organizers, financers and external sponsors, including those glorifying these acts of terror against Pakistan, to be held accountable and brought to justice.