US puts 5 Haqqani Network associates on terrorist list

Squeezing recalcitrant ally Pakistan, the United States has put on its terrorist list five associates of the Haqqani Network branded as a "veritable arm" of the Pakistani Inter Services Intelligence (ISI) agency.

Announcing the sanctions Thursday on the five people allegedly linked to insurgency along the Afghanistan-Pakistan border, the US Treasury Department accused them of collaborating with "the most dangerous terrorist organizations operating in Afghanistan and Pakistan."

"These financiers and facilitators provide the fuel for the Taliban, Haqqani Network and Al Qaeda to realise their violent aspirations," Treasury Under Secretary for Terrorism and Financial Intelligence David Cohen said in a statement.

US companies and individuals can't engage in transactions with the five individuals named in the sanctions.

Among those targeted was Abdul Aziz Abbasin, whom the Treasury Department described as a "key commander" for the Haqqani Network, a militant group that operates on the Afghanistan-Pakistan border.

"Abbasin commands a group of Taliban fighters and has assisted in running a training camp for foreign fighters in Paktika Province, and also has been involved in ambushing supply vehicles of Afghan government forces and the transport of weapons to Afghanistan," the Treasury Department said.

Also blacklisted were Hajji Faizullah Khan Noorzai, Hajji Malik Noorzai and Abdur Rehman accused of providing financial and material support to the Taliban and Fazal Rahim, alleged financial facilitator for Al Qaeda, as well as the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan.

Admiral Mike Mullen, the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, said last week that the Haqqani network is a "veritable arm" of the ISI and was involved in a September truck bombing that wounded 77 NATO troops and killed five Afghans.

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