Designation triggers counterterrorism measures including travel bans against group members that attempt to enter US, asset freezes, and criminal penalties against the group's financial supporters

Washington - The US Department of State announced today that the Pakistani Taliban (Tehrik-i-Taliban) has officially been added to the list of foreign terrorist organizations. Senator Menendez, who was part of a group of Senators who championed efforts in the Senate to accomplish this, applauded the designation and released the following statement:

"I am pleased that Sec. Clinton responded to our requests to protect our nation and include the Pakistani Taliban on the list of foreign terrorist organizations after the Times Square bomber confessed his links to this organization and warned of future attempts. The Pakistani Taliban is a proven murderous organization that has been implicated in numerous terrorist attempts internationally and domestically, and has no shame in hiding their intentions to continue menacing the security of nations and families. Their inclusion on the official list of foreign terrorists will be an effective way of undermining their access to financial resources, logistical support, and ultimately helping to protect Americans here at home. I am pleased that our efforts in the Senate will ensure our nation justifiably penalizes an organization that jeopardizes our national and international security."

Earlier this year U.S. Senator Menendez (D-NJ) joined U.S. Senators Charles E. Schumer (D-NY), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), Frank Lautenberg (D-NJ) in efforts to ensure the designation of the Pakistani Taliban as a foreign terrorist after Faisal Shahzad, the Pakistani-born U.S. national Times Square bomber, was directly linked to the organization by U.S. intelligence investigations. On May 11, the senators sent a letter to Secretary of State Hillary Clinton urging the administration to cite the group, also known as the Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP), as a Foreign Terrorist Organization (FTO) in order to trigger a series of counterterrorism measures. A day after the man behind the Times Square terror plot confessed to receiving training and financing from the Pakistani Taliban and warned of future terrorist attempts the Senators denounced the fact that the organization still had not been added to the list and announced legislation to require the Pakistani Taliban to be immediately designated as a terrorist group. The designation announced today is a critical step and useful tool in combating foreign terrorist groups. It triggers a series of steps, including: freezing of assets, barring foreign nationals with ties to the group from entering the U.S., and criminalizing the act of providing any material assistance to the group.