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December 11, 2020

UK slaps sanctions on former SSP Rao Anwar


Fri, Dec 11, 2020
Former Malir SSP Rao Anwar. Photo: File 

  • The British government imposes a travel ban on Rao Anwar
  • The British government also orders the freezing of Anwar's assets
  • The United States had already slapped sanctions on him last year for massive human rights violations

LONDON: The British government on Thursday decided to impose a travel restriction on Former Malir SSP Rao Anwar for human rights abuses.

The British government also ordered the freezing of Rao Anwar' assets.

Speaking to Geo News, a spokesman of UK's Foreign and Commonwealth Office, which issued the list, confirmed that “Anwar Ahmad Khan: Former Senior Superintendent of Police (SSP) in Malir District, Karachi” has been sanctioned.

The Foreign Office said that Ahmad Anwar Khan, the former Senior Superintendent of Police in Malir District, Pakistan, and former President of The Gambia, Yahya Jammeh, are facing sanctions for historic human rights violations including extrajudicial killings of protestors and minority groups.

In the designated list, Rao Anwar appears at number 59. The UK government explained that the former "encounter specialist" from Karachi has been slapped with sanctions which include an asset freeze and travel ban to the UK.

The British government said that Rao Anwar was involved in killings through staged encounters including the murder of Pashtun model Naqeebullah Mehsud.

It said: “In his role as SSP Malir, Khan was reportedly responsible for numerous staged police encounters in which individuals were killed by police, and was directly involved in over 190 police encounters that resulted in the deaths of over 400 people, including the murder of Naqeebullah Mehsud in 2018. Khan is, therefore, responsible for or complicit in, the serious violations of the right to life.”

These sanctions give the UK powers to stop those involved in serious human rights abuses and violations from entering the country, channelling money through UK banks, or profiting from their economy.

Announced on Human Rights Day as a 'warning'

The British government said that Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab announced sanctions on International Human Rights Day to warn those who commit human rights violations that the UK will not hesitate to impose further sanctions.

Foreign Secretary Dominic Raab said that these sanctions send a clear message to human rights violators that the UK will hold them to account.

“The UK and our allies are shining a light on the severe and systematic human rights violations perpetrated by those sanctioned today. Global Britain will stand up for democracy, human rights and the rule of law as a force for good in the world," he said.

"Underlining the UK’s position as a global force for good, this regime showcases commitment to the rules-based international system and to standing up for victims of human rights violations and abuses around the world.”

Russian sanctions

In Russia, the UK is imposing sanctions, including travel bans and asset freezes, against three individuals and the Terek Special Rapid Response Unit responsible for torture and other human rights violations against LGBT people in Chechnya.

From the Russian Federation, the sanctioned persons include Magomed Daudov: The Spokesperson of the Parliament of the Chechen Republic; Aiub Kataev: Head of the Ministry of Internal Affairs of the Chechen Republic of the Russian Federation in Argun; Apti Alaudinov: Deputy Minister of Internal Affairs of the Chechen Republic and Major General of the Police; Terek Special Rapid Response Unit; and from the Gambia, Yahya Abdul Aziz Jemus Junkung Jammeh: Former President of The Gambia; Yankuba Badjie: Former Director-General of the Gambian National Intelligence Agency (NIA); Zineb Jammeh: Former First Lady of The Gambia and wife of Yahya Jammeh.

Saudi sanctions

Several Saudi nationals have also been sanctioned for the unlawful killing of Jamal Khashoggi at the Saudi Consulate in Istanbul on 2 October 2018. These include Fahad Shabib, member of the Royal Guard; Thaar Ghaleb; Mansour Osman; Naif Hassan; Abdulaziz Mohammed; Mustafa Mohammed; Waleed Abdullah; Salah Muhammed; and Dr Salah Muhammed Tubaigy. These men were part of the 15-man team sent to Turkey by Saudi authorities.