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International relations

US labels Pakistani insurgents 'terrorists' in victory for China

Experts see backdoor deal on anti-Chinese group targeting Belt and Road projects

Pakistani paramilitary soldiers gather after an attack by the Balochistan Liberation Army on the Chinese consulate in Karachi last November.    © Reuters

QUETTA, Pakistan -- The decision this week by the U.S. to name a Pakistani separatist group as a terrorist organization is seen by analysts as part of a backdoor deal between Washington and Beijing, after China allowed a United Nations Security Council resolution against a Pakistan-based militant leader.

The U.S. State Department on Tuesday issued the terrorist designation on the Balochistan Liberation Army, or BLA, following attacks on Chinese-funded Belt and Road Initiative projects in Pakistan's southern Balochistan province. The move will expose and isolate organizations and individuals associated with the insurgent group and deny them access to the U.S. financial system.

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