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U.S. Designates Student Wing Of Pakistani Lashkar-e-Taiba Group As 'Terrorist'

FILE: Hafiz Saeed, head of the Jamaat-ud-Dawa organisation and founder of Lashkar-e-Taiba, gestures during a news conference in Lahore, Pakistan.

The United States on December 28 added the student wing of the Pakistan-based militant organization Lashkar-e-Taiba to its list of "foreign terrorist organizations."

Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT), or Army of the Pure, is an anti-Indian militant group with historical ties to Pakistan's top spy agencies. It has been accused of orchestrating numerous attacks, including a 2008 assault in Mumbai that killed 166 people.

The State Department's move against the student group, Al-Muhammadia Students, came as the Treasury Department added two Lashkar-e-Taiba leaders to the U.S. list of "specially designated global terrorists," subjecting them to U.S. sanctions that bars Americans from doing business with them.

LeT was banned by the Pakistani government in 2002 but it has continued operating through front organizations, according to U.S. officials, and their leaders conduct public rallies and interviews.

The State Department announced that it amended the designation of LeT as a "foreign terrorist organization" to include what it called the group's student wing.

The Treasury Department added Muhammad Sarwar, LeT's leader in Lahore, and Shahid Mahmood, an LeT leader in Karachi, to the U.S. list of "specially designated global terrorists."

Based on reporting by Reuters and