‘Most uncalled for’: India on China blocking move to designate JeM leader as global terrorist

NEW DELHI, Aug 13 (PTI): India on Friday described as “most uncalled for” China blocking a proposal at the UN Security Council to designate Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) deputy chief Abdul Rauf Azhar as a global terrorist.

Reacting to China’s move, External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said India has noted with “regret” that a “technical hold” has been placed on the proposal, adding the international community has been unable to speak in one common voice in fighting terrorism.

He asserted that New Delhi will continue to pursue its principled position of bringing such terrorists to justice.

“It is unfortunate that when it comes to our collective battle against terrorism, the international community has been unable to speak in one common voice,” Bagchi said.

China on Wednesday put technical hold on the joint proposal at the UN Security Council by India and the US to designate the JeM leader, who is the younger brother of the group’s chief Masood Azhar.

All other 14 member states of the top UN body supported the proposal.

Bagchi said Abdul Rauf is the deputy chief of JeM which is a UN proscribed entity.

He was actively involved in terrorist strikes such as the hijacking of Indian airlines IC 814 in 1999, the attack on the Indian Parliament in 2001 and on an Indian Army camp in Kathua in 2014.

“He has been proscribed under Indian and US laws already, and therefore the placing of the ‘technical hold’ against such wanted terrorist is most uncalled for,” Bagchi said.

The designation of Abdul Rauf would have resulted in a global travel ban on him as well as requiring Pakistan to freeze his assets and to cut off his access to weapons and related materials.

“India will continue pursuing its principled position of bringing these terrorists to justice, including through the UNSC 1267 Sanctions regime,” Bagchi said.

He also referred to comments by Ruchira Kamboj, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN in New York, during an open debate at the UN Security Council on August 9.

Kamboj said there should be no double standards in dealing with terrorists and that the practice of placing holds and blocks without giving any justification must end.

She said it is most regrettable that genuine and evidence-based listing proposals pertaining to some of the most notorious terrorists in the world are being placed on hold.

Kamboj said double standards and continuing politicisation have rendered the credibility of the sanctions regime at an all-time low, Bagchi quoted her as saying.

The Chinese action came less than a month after Beijing blocked a similar joint proposal by India and the US to blacklist the Pakistan-based deputy leader of Lashkar-e-Taiba Abdul Rehman Makki.

Makki too has been involved in raising funds, recruiting and radicalising youths to resort to violence and planning and executing attacks in India, including the Mumbai terror strikes.