Masood Azhar became the general secretary of Harkat-ul-Ansar in the early 1990s. (File Photo: PTI)
In a major diplomatic victory for India, Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar was on Wednesday listed as a 'global terrorist' by the UN Security Council. The Jaish chief was a close associate of Osama bin Laden, terror motivator in several African countries and also known by many as the Pakistani cleric.
Laden had hosted a banquet party when 50-year-old overweight terrorist was released by India in exchange for freeing the hijacked Indian Airlines aircraft IC-814 on December 31, 1999 in Kandahar.
After his release in 1999, Azhar formed the Jaish-e-Mohammed and scripted many audacious terror strikes in India.
Jaish announced its arrival in the Kashmir Valley in 2000 by carrying out a suicide car bombing attack at the gate of Badamibagh cantonment in Srinagar, the headquarters of the Army's 15 Corps. Two armymen were killed in the attack.
Later, it was involved in the attack on Parliament in 2001, the Pathankot air force base, army camps in Jammu and Uri, and the latest suicide attack on CRPF in Pulwama which claimed the lives of 40 personnel.
Following is the chronology of the major events leading to his designation:
2009: India moves a proposal by itself to designate Azhar as a global terrorist, a listing that will subject him to global travel ban, asset freeze and arms embargo. China blocks the move.
2016: India again moves the proposal with the backing of the P3 - the United States, the United Kingdom and France in the UN's 1267 Sanctions Committee to ban Azhar.
2017: The P3 nations move a similar proposal again. China, a veto-wielding permanent member of the Security Council, blocks the proposal from being adopted.
February 27, 2019: The US, the UK and France move a fresh proposal in the UN Security Council to designate Azhar as a global terrorist.
March 13, 2019: China puts the hold on the proposal scuttling yet another attempt to blacklist the JeM chief. The proposal was the fourth such bid at the UN in the last 10 years to list Azhar as a global terrorist.
March 28, 2019: The US, supported by France and the UK, directly moves a draft resolution in the UN Security Council to blacklist the Pakistan-based terror group's chief.
April 3, 2019: China hits out at the US for threatening to use "all available resources" to designate the Pakistan-based JeM chief as a 'global terrorist', saying Washington's move is complicating the issue and not conducive to peace and stability in South Asia.
April 30, 2019: China says "some progress" has been achieved on designating Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN and hopes that the vexed issue will be "properly resolved".
May 1, 2019: The 1267 Sanctions Committee designates Azhar as a global terrorist after China lifts the hold on the proposal of the US, the UK and France.