From our partners at The Agonist
Washington | Sept 7
CBS – The Obama administration is officially designating the Pakistan-based Haqqani network a terrorist organization before a weekend deadline to decide on the group’s classification, senior U.S. officials confirmed Friday.
Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton signed a report to Congress Friday stating that the Haqqani network meets the statutory criteria for designation as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO). A Senior State Department official said the report was “quite short” and notifies Congress that she intends to designate the Haqqani network as an FTO.
According to the official, after Congressional notifications take place, it will likely take 7-10 days for the FTO process to be completed. The designation will criminalize material support for the group, which has been behind a large number of the attacks on U.S. and NATO troops in neighboring Afghanistan, and which U.S. officials have long pushed Pakistan’s leaders to target more aggressively.
Designating the Haqqani network a terrorist organization is a complicated political decision as the U.S. withdraws from Afghanistan and pushes for a reconciliation pact to end more than a decade of warfare.
Enraged by a string of high-profile attacks on U.S. and NATO troops, Congress ordered Secretary Clinton to give her verdict by Sunday. U.S. officials say there were disagreements within the administration over what to decide.