WASHINGTON  - US President Barack Obama has signed into law an Act requiring the secretary of state to determine whether the Haqqani network meets legal criteria to be designated as a foreign terrorist organisation.
Passed recently by both the chambers of the US Congress - the House of Representatives and the Senate - the Haqqani Network Terrorist Designation Act of 2012 was signed by Mr Obama amid repeated demands by US lawmakers to designate Haqqani network as a foreign terrorist organisation.
The state department, which has slapped sanctions against some of the key leaders of the network , has so far resisted the move to designate it as a foreign terrorist organisation.
Although secretary of state Hillary Clinton had publicly announced late last year that sanctions against the outfit were on their way, the state department is yet to make any official announcement in this regard and maintains that the process is on.
Congressman Mike Rogers, who is also the chairman of Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence, had earlier urged Obama to “quickly” sign the act into law , holding that it was now “time for action to protect lives of US soldiers”.
Early this month, a report by the Combating Terrorism Centre (CTC) of the US Military Academy (USMA), a prestigious New York-based institution, had said the Haqqani Network had continued to receive financial and logistic support from Pakistan military.
The report said the historical communication logs between the Haqqani network and the ISI, which are now publicly available, suggested a link between the two.
It, however noted that the relationship between Haqqani network and the ISI is not that smooth and very often, there is friction between the two.
“Islamabad has repeatedly and vigorously denied it provides material or logistical support to the Haqqani network. However, Pakistan has resisted US pressure to launch military operations against the Haqqanis,” the report said.