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China blocks India’s move to put Jaish chief Masood Azhar in UN global terrorist list, MEA ‘disappointed’

MEA Said That India Is Grateful To All Countries Who Supported The Bid To Designate Azhar As A Global Terrorist.

News Nation Bureau | Edited By : Raghwendra Shukla | Updated on: 14 Mar 2019, 12:13:58 AM
The proposal to designate Azhar as a global terrorist was moved by France, the UK and the US on February 27. (File Photo)

New Delhi :

In yet another setback to India's bid to designate Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed's chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist, China on Wednesday put a technical hold on a proposal in the UN Security Council to ban him following the Pulwama terror attack. China, a veto-wielding permanent member of the Security Council, has already blocked the move thrice since 2009.

Reacting on the development, Ministry of External Affairs said ‘we are disappointed by the outcome’ and will continue to pursue all available avenues to ensure that terrorists involved in attacks on Indian citizens are brought to justice. 

“This has prevented action by the international community to designate the leader of (Jaish), a proscribed and active terrorist organization which has claimed responsibility for the terrorist attack in Jammu and Kashmir on 14 February 2019,” MEA said.

MEA also said that India is grateful to all countries who supported the bid to designate Azhar as a global terrorist. ‘We are grateful for the efforts of the Member States who moved the designation proposal and the unprecedented number of all other Security Council members as well as non-members who joined as co-sponsors,” tweeted ANI.

The proposal to designate Azhar under the 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee of the UN Security Council was moved by France, the UK and the US on February 27, days after the Pulwama terror attack carried out by a suicide bomber belonging to the Jaish terror group that led to a flare-up in tensions between India and Pakistan.

The Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee members have 10 working days to raise any objections to the proposal moved by France, the UK, and the US. The no-objection period deadline was supposed to end at 3 pm local time (New York) on Wednesday (12:30 am IST Thursday).

China, an ‘all-weather ally’ of Pakistan, has blocked India's proposal from being adopted by the Sanctions Committee in 2009 and 2016. In 2017, Beijing also blocked a move by the US, the UK and France to designate Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN.

According to the listing rules of the Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee, if no objection is received by the end of the no-objection period, the decision will be deemed adopted, meaning that Azhar will become a UN-designated global terrorist.

A UNSC designation would have subjected Azhar to an assets freeze, travel ban and an arms embargo. An assets freeze under the Sanctions Committee requires that all states freeze without delay the funds and other financial assets or economic resources of designated individuals and entities. The travel ban entails preventing the entry into or transit by all states through their territories by designated individuals. Under the arms embargo, all states are required to prevent the direct or indirect supply, sale and transfer from their territories or by their nationals outside their territories, or using their flag vessels or aircraft, of arms and related material of all types, spare parts, and technical advice, assistance, or training related to military activities, to designated individuals and entities.

Hectic diplomatic and political parleys preceded before the closely-watched March 13 deadline as New Delhi reached out to member countries of the 15-member UNSC.

In the wake of the terror attack in Pulwama, India launched a major diplomatic offensive against Islamabad, holding briefing for envoys of 25 countries, including from the five permanent UNSC members - the US, China, Russia, the UK and France - to highlight Pakistan's role in using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

India also handed over to Pakistan a dossier on ‘specific details’ of involvement of the JeM in the Pulwama terror attack.

Days before the March 13 deadline on Azhar's possible listing, Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale met Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington. The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) in New Delhi said in a statement that Pompeo expressed his "understanding" of India's concerns on cross-border terrorism.

"They agreed that Pakistan needs to take concerted action to dismantle the terrorist infrastructure and to deny safe haven to all terrorist groups in its territory. They also agreed that those who support or abet terrorism in any form should be held accountable," the MEA said.

Earlier on Wednesday, the US said Azhar meets the criteria to brand him as a "global terrorist" by the UN and China's opposition to the move to "update" the designation list went against the interests of Washington and Beijing in achieving regional stability and peace.

With PTI Inputs

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First Published : 13 Mar 2019, 11:34:39 PM