The United States is preparing to blacklist the Pakistan-linked Haqqani network, accused of some high-profile attacks, as early as Friday.

US officials have been debating the move for a month, with opponents fearing that it could pour more salt on the wounded alliance with Pakistan after months of turmoil in the delicate relationship.

Based in Washington, the Institute for the Study of War (ISW) said in its recent report that the Haqqani Network has been an effective fighting force and proxy of the Pakistani security services for the better part of 30 years.

The debate on the issue reached a peak in August under the pressure of a Congressional reporting deadline on September 10.

Designation by the State Department as a Foreign Terrorist Organization would bring sanctions such as criminal penalties for anyone providing material support to the group and seizure of any assets in the United States.

The network been accused of launching scores of cross-border attacks on US troops in Afghanistan from strongholds in Pakistan’s restive northwest, and Washington has demanded that Islamabad do more to deny them “safe havens.”US officials have linked the Haqqani network to some of the boldest attacks in Afghanistan, including a June assault on a hotel near Kabul that killed 18 people and a siege last year of the US embassy.