US State Department spokesperson Ned Price said Friday that listing the Taliban* as a terrorist organization was one tool in several that Washington could use to lure the Afghan militant group into living up to its promises, which include renouncing terrorism and ending support for terrorist groups.
Asked at a Friday press conference about whether the threat of being placed on the State Department's Foreign Terrorist Organizations (FTO) list was a pressure tool Washington was using to get results from the Taliban, Price responded that it was.
“We have a number of tools at our disposal. The Taliban, right now, is a specially designated global terrorist group. They’re on the SDGT designation list. That is one tool. It’s both a stick and … a carrot, a potential inducement, to induce the Taliban to uphold those basic international norms, the basic rights of its people," Price said. "But the FTO list, other sanctions, that’s one single tool.”
The SDGT list, maintained by the US Treasury, is used for applying financial sanctions to groups that frustrate their operations, while the FTO prohibits material support for them and is much higher profile. The Taliban was added to the SDGT list in 2002, but while the Pakistani Taliban, or Tehrik-e Taliban Pakistan, is listed as a foreign terrorist organization under Executive Order 13224, the Afghan Taliban is not.