WASHINGTON – The US State Department on Monday declared Hizbul Mujahideen supreme leader Syed Salahuddin a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) and imposed sanctions on him, read a press release.
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Under his supervision, the organisation has been involved in fighting against India forces in occupied Kashmir.
It is notable that the announcement was made at the time when Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi was scheduled to have a maiden meeting with US President Donald Trump after a few hours.
According to the release, “Department of State has designated Mohammad Yusuf Shah, also known as (AKA) Syed Salahuddin, as a Specially Designated Global Terrorist (SDGT) under Section 1(b) of Executive Order (E.O.) 13224, which imposes sanctions on foreign persons who have committed, or pose a significant risk of committing, acts of terrorism that threaten the security of U.S. nationals or the national security, foreign policy, or economy of the United States.”
After the announcement, “U.S. persons are generally prohibited from engaging in transactions with Salahuddin and all of Salahuddin’s property and interests in property subject to United States jurisdiction are blocked.”
It added that Salahuddin in September 2016 vowed to block any peaceful resolution to the Kashmir conflict, threatened to train more Kashmiri suicide bombers, and vowed to turn the Kashmir valley “into a graveyard for Indian forces.”
The group also claimed responsibility for several attacks, including the April 2014 explosives attack in Indian-administered Jammu and Kashmir, which injured 17 people.
Earlier, the Trump administration approved selling of nearly two dozen unarmed surveillance drones to India. The deal, estimated to be worth about $2 billion, still requires congressional approval.