Senators want Pakistani Taliban on terror list
Posted May 11, 2010 10:44 a.m. EDT
Updated May 11, 2010 2:05 p.m. EDT
WASHINGTON — Several lawmakers, including U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan of North Carolina, are urging the Obama administration to put the Pakistani Taliban on a State Department terrorism blacklist that would impose sanctions on the group, which officials say is linked to the failed Times Square car bombing.
In a letter Tuesday to Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton, at least five Democratic senators asked Tuesday that the group, Tehrik-e-Taliban Pakistan, be designated a "foreign terrorist organization." The move would freeze the group's U.S. assets and make it a crime for Americans to offer it material support.
"The Pakistani Taliban is a murderous organization dedicated to killing civilians, harming U.S. interests in the region, and has even taken credit for terrorist acts committed on U.S. soil," the senators wrote. "Designating the Pakistani Taliban as a foreign terrorist organization would be an effective means of curtailing support for their terrorist activities and pressuring other groups to withdraw their logistical, financial and political support for this terrorist organization."
U.S. officials have said the Pakistani Taliban provided financing and training to would-be Times Square bomber Faisal Shahzad, who is believed to have spent five months in Pakistan preparing for the attack.
The government lists 45 groups as foreign terrorist organizations. The designation means the groups' assets are frozen, and members are barred from entering the U.S.