<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –> In a clear reference to Pakistan providing safe havens to terror groups, India has told the UN that the international community needs to urgently address the backing outfits like the Haqqani Network, LeT and JeM draw from their “shadowy supporters” outside Afghanistan.”Experience, as well as academic research, provides ample support for the assertion that conflicts in which foreign assistance is available to shadowy entities that fight legitimate state authorities tend to be more severe and last longer than other types of conflict,” India’s Ambassador to the UN Syed Akbaruddin said in a Security Council session on the situation in Afghanistan.Without naming Pakistan, Akbaruddin said sustainable peace in Afghanistan is contingent upon terror groups and individuals being denied safe havens in the country’s neighbourhood and the international community must address the issue of the support that terror outfits like the Taliban and al-Qaeda get from their supporters outside Afghanistan.
ALSO READ Pakistan as victim & perpetrator: Different takes on terrorism in Asia”If we are to bring sustainable peace to Afghanistan, groups and individuals that perpetrate violence against the people and the government of Afghanistan must be denied safe havens and sanctuaries in Afghanistan’s neighbourhood,” he said.”We need to address, as an imperative, the support that terrorist organisations like the Taliban, Haqqani Network, Daesh, al-Qaeda and its designated affiliates such as Lashkar-e-Taiba and the Jaish-e Mohammed which operate entirely outside the fabric of international law draw from their shadowy supporters outside Afghanistan,” Akbaruddin said here yesterday.
ALSO READ Pakistan’s ‘outstanding’ issue is its support to terrorism, says India after Trump-Sharif phone callHe pointed out to the meeting in the 15-nation Council that it is apparent that efforts by nations for rebuilding institutions, infrastructure and networks in Afghanistan are being “undermined, schools are being destroyed, mosques bombarded and religious gatherings targeted”.”It is also evident that those who perpetrate these heinous crimes have survived and thrived only with support and sanctuaries on the outside,” he said, in a veiled but strong reference to Pakistan.
ALSO READ Heart of Asia declaration which named Pak-based terror outfits LeT, JeM was unanimous: Sartaj AzizAkbaruddin noted with concern that while the international community recommits to standing by the Afghan people each time the UN members discuss the situation in the war-torn country, the number of Afghan civilian and security forces casualties keeps rising.”While the Taliban sanctions regime remains split for more than five years, the designated terrorist group makes concerted effort to capture and hold territory. Therefore, for numerous Afghan women, men and children there is no respite from the plague of terrorism,” he said.The Indian envoy emphasised that the international community must introspect about the way it is approaching the situation in Afghanistan and whether there is need for course correction.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>UN Secretary General- designate Antonio Guterres has voiced appreciation for India’s engagement with the world body and its contributions to various areas of the UN’s work during a meeting with Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar.Jaishankar called on Guterres soon after his swearing-in as the 9th Secretary General of the United Nations.”The Secretary General designate appreciated India’s engagement with the UN and contributions to various areas of the UN’s work,” a spokesperson of India’s Permanent Mission to the UN told PTI on Tuesday.Jaishankar congratulated Guterres on his swearing-in and assured him of India’s support and assistance in areas that the SG-designate focuses as his priorities including on matters of sustainable development and peace and security, the spokesperson said.Jaishankar also met Under Secretary-General Jeffrey Feltman and other officials of the UN’s Department of Political Affairs and exchanged views on a wide array of issues of common interest.Guterres was sworn-in as the next UN Secretary General on Monday and will assume his new role on January 1 next year, a day after Ban Ki-moon’s 10-year tenure as the world s top diplomat ends this month.India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin tweeted a photo of Jaishankar meeting Guterres and other UN officials, saying “diplomacy entails reaching out upfront & backroom talks too”.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>India has strongly criticised the Security Council for taking months to consider sanctioning leaders of groups it has itself designated as terror entities, in an obvious reference to the “technical hold” on India’s bid to get JeM chief Masood Azhar banned by the UN.Asserting that the Security Council is stuck in its own “time warp and politics”, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin on Monday slammed the Council’s inability to sanction the leaders of terrorist organisations.”While our collective conscience is ravaged everyday by terrorists in some region or another, the Security Council gives itself 9 months to consider whether to sanction leaders of organisations it has itself designated as terrorist entities,” Akbaruddin said at a session on equitable representation and increase in the membership of the Security Council here.Earlier this year, China had extended the “technical hold” on India’s move to get Azhar designated as a terrorist by the UN. The six-month validity of the technical hold lapsed in late September and China sought another three-month extension on India’s bid.He lamented that the snail-paced and “never-ending carousel of discussions” on United Nations Security Council (UNSC) reforms, saying “it is time to break the impasse” to urgently reform the body that is “unresponsive” to the current global situation.The inability to respond to humanitarian situations, terrorist threats and peacekeeping vulnerabilities during this year itself are part of the price that is being paid for the international community’s lack of progress on the critical matter, he noted.”On issues pivotal to international security such as Syria, there is inaction, and on other situations like dealing with the peacekeeping crisis in South Sudan we see fragmented action which is not implemented even months after being agreed upon,” Akbaruddin said.”The Security Council, stuck in its own time warp and politics, can only be described as working randomly on the basis of a mix of ad-hocism, scrambling and political paralysis. Need one say more about the urgency of the need for reform of this relic which has long been unresponsive to the needs of our time,” he said.Akbaruddin said the never-ending carousel of discussions on UNSC reforms leaves many in the international community perplexed as the crucial reform of the Security Council has been delayed despite both its importance and its urgency.He pointed out that the Council’s global governance structure does not cease to surprise the international community with its persistent inability to even effectively engage with the tasks at hand.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Diwali was commemorated for the first time at the United Nations, with the world body’s imposing headquarters here lit up especially on the occasion of the Indian festival of lights. The facade of the UN headquarters was lit in bright hues and the words ‘Happy Diwali’, along with the image of a traditional ‘diya’, projected onto the building.”Lighting up. @UN lights up for #Diwali for 1st time,” India’s Ambassador to the UN Syed Akbaruddin tweeted. “Happy Diwali! @UN celebrates Diwali for 1st time. Thank you @UN_PGA for this initiative,” Akbaruddin said in another tweet, thanking General Assembly President Peter Thomson for the initiative.He also tweeted a picture of passers-by clicking photographs of the building as well as being themselves clicked against the illuminated UN headquarters in the background.Thomson also tweeted a picture of the UN building lit up in bright blue for Diwali and said “Light over darkness, hope over despair, knowledge over ignorance, good over evil – the UN lights up. Happy Diwali!”The UN Secretariat building will be lit up for Diwali from October 29-31. It is for the first time that the Indian festival of lights is celebrated at the world body after the UN General Assembly adopted a resolution in December, 2014 that acknowledged the “significance of Diwali”.Noting that the festival is observed in many UN member states, the resolution had called on UN bodies to avoid holding meetings on Diwali, declaring it a no-meeting day.From 2016 onwards, Diwali was made an optional holiday for the UN, India’s Permanent Mission to the world body said in a special video message. Earlier in June, the UN building was lit up on the occasion of the International Yoga Day, with images of Yoga postures projected on the imposing headquarters.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Syed Akbaruddin, India’s Permanent Representative to the UN again hit out at Pakistan over their Kashmir claims. He said: “We look away (on the issue of dealing with terrorism) as some amongst us stall our collective efforts, as they use terrorists as proxies in their territorial quests. We have heard one such lone voice a short while ago, making claims to an integral part of India. A country which has established itself as a global epicenter of terrorism. Such claims find no resonance amongst the international community.”Referring to Sharif’s speech at UNGA, he said “Just less than 10 days ago the GA Debate witnessed a singular lack of support for Pakistan’s baseless claims. Need one say more. Abandon your futile quest. Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and will remain so. No amount of misuse of international fora by Pakistan will change that reality. The sell by date of Pakistan’s anachronistic approach is over.”Pak snub at UNThe UN Security Council has not been discussing the escalating tensions between India and Pakistan, Russia’s envoy to the UN and Council president for October said, in a clear snub to Pakistan which had raised the Kashmir issue and surgical strike by India in the world body.”I don’t want to go there, don’t want to go there. No no please, I don’t want to go there,” Russia’s Ambassador to the UN Vitaly Churkin said as he quickly interrupted a question on India and Pakistan tensions during a press briefing. Churkin was addressing the media as Russia assumed the Presidency of the 15-nation Council for the month of October.When asked why he would not comment on the issue, Churkin said “because I am President of the Security Council. The Security Council has not been discussing it (the India Pakistan situation). “Sorry sir, I don’t want to go there. No comment, no comment, sorry please,” Churkin said.When asked again why he and Russia were “so reluctant” to discuss the India-Pakistan situation, Churkin said, “I’m sure you know. There are so many other things.” Churkin’s remarks come as a clear snub to Pakistan, which had approached the Security Council just last week on the surgical strikes conducted by India to target terror launch pads across the Line of Control as well as on the Kashmir issue.Earlier in the day, UN Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s Deputy Spokesman Farhan Haq was asked what the UN position is on External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj s remarks in her address to the UN General Assembly that Pakistan should “abandon” its Kashmir dream since Kashmir is and will remain an integral part of India.”We have issued a statement on the situation between India and Pakistan. I would refer you back to that,” Haq said.When asked again why the UN did not “say anything” to Swaraj’s remarks that Pakistan should stop dreaming about Kashmir, Haq said, “We don’t comment on every speech made in the General Assembly, but we have been commenting on the situation on Kashmir, and like I said, we issued a statement on that just last Friday.”Pakistan s envoy to the UN Maleeha Lodhi had met New Zealand’s UN Ambassador Gerard van Bohemen, president of the Council for the month of September, and had raised the issue of the surgical strikes in “informal consultations” of the Council.She had also met UN Secretary General Ban on the issue but the UN Chief had called on the governments of India and Pakistan to address their outstanding issues, including Kashmir, peacefully through “diplomacy and dialogue”.India s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin had last week said that Pakistan approaching the UN Chief and the Security Council over the surgical strikes in PoK has not found any resonance at the world body.Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif too had tried to internationalise the Kashmir issue, raising it with almost every world leader he held bilateral talks with on the sidelines of the 71st session of the UN General Assembly last month.
United Nations: India strongly criticised an “unresponsive” Security Council on Wednesday for being indecisive about sanctioning leaders of organisations it itself designates as terrorist entities after China extended its “technical hold” on India’s bid for a UN ban against JeM chief Masood Azhar.
India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin told the UN General Assembly that the 15-nation Security Council, the “principal organ” tasked with the maintenance of peace and security, has in a variety of ways become “unresponsive to the needs of our time and ineffective to meeting the challenges it is confronted with”.
Without naming China, Akbaruddin referred to its technical hold on India’s bid against Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Azhar, saying the Council is a body that “ponders for six months on whether to sanction leaders of organisations it has itself designated as terrorist entities”.
“Then, unable to decide, it gives itself three more months to further consider this issue. One has to expectantly wait for nine months before the process is completed to know if Council members have decided on a single issue,” he said in the General Assembly debate on the Report of the Secretary General on the Work of the Organisation.
On 31 March this year, China – a veto-wielding permanent member of the Security Council – had blocked India’s move to put a ban on Azhar under the Al-Qaeda Sanctions Committee of the Council. China was the sole member in the 15-nation UN organ to put a hold on India’s application with all other 14 members of the Council supporting New Delhi’s bid to place Azhar on the
1267 sanctions list that would subject him to an assets freeze and travel ban.
The Chinese technical hold had lapsed on Monday, and had China not raised further objection, the resolution designating Azhar as a terrorist would have been passed automatically. However, Beijing on Saturday announced the extension of its “technical hold”.
“The extended technical hold on it will allow more time for the Committee to deliberate on the matter and for relevant parties to have further consultations,” foreign ministry spokesman Geng Shuang had said in Beijing. Akbaruddin said in certain instances, the Council does not even begin the nine-month process of identification and listing of publicly announced leaders of listed entities.
“At best, it is now a body that can be described as an interesting and random mix of ad-hocism, scrambling and political paralysis. This global governance architecture now calls for comprehensive reform,” the Indian envoy said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>It seems like India’s global isolation plan is going rather well. On Friday, Russia tore into Pakistan in an official statement saying: “We are concerned with the aggravation lately of the situation along the line of control between India and Pakistan. We are calling on the parties not to allow any escalation of tension and to settle the existing problems by political and diplomatic means through negotiations. We stand for decisive struggle against terrorism in all its manifestations. We expect the government of Pakistan to take effective steps in order to stop the activities of terrorists’ groups in the territory of the country.”Now, USA joined the chorus saying nuclear states should show more restraint. With Democratic presidential nominee Hillary Clinton asserting that Islamabad is running at full speed to develop tactical nukes in their continuing hostility with India, the United States has called on Pakistan to exercise restraint regarding nuclear weapons and missile capabilities. Addressing the media, State Department spokesperson Mark Toner said in a clear message to Pakistan that nuclear-capable states have a very clear responsibility to exercise restraint regarding nuclear weapons and missile capabilities.Pak defence minister Asif said: “actical weapons joh hain, joh hamne yeh progammes develop kiya hua hai, yeh apne hifazat ke liye develop kiya hua hai. Hamne devices jo hain just as showpieces toh nahin rakhe hue. Lekin agar hamare salamati ko khatra hua, toh hum nestanabhut kar denge unko (Tactical weapons, our programmes that we have developed, they have been developed for our protection. We haven’t kept the devices that we have just as showpieces. But if our safety is threatened, we will annihilate them (India).”Talking about the continued surge in tensions between India, Pakistan especially after the recent surgical strike by the Indian Army in Pakistan occupied Kashmir on terror launch pads, Toner stated that the U.S. is following the situation on the ground very closely and urges calm and restraint by both sides. We understand that the Pakistani and Indian militaries have been in communication and we believe that continued communication between them is important to reduce tensions. I think we certainly dont want to see any kind of escalation and certainly any kind of break in that communication, he said.Re-iterating that the U.S. condemns the deadly Uri attack, he added that the Barack Obama-led government has repeatedly and consistently expressed its concerns regarding the danger that cross-border terrorism poses for the region.And we continue to urge actions to combat and de-escalate and delegitimize, rather, terrorist groups like Lashkar-e-Toiba, rather Haqqani Network, as well as Jaish-e-Mohammad, Toner said.Asserting that U.S. does not want to see tensions between India and Pakistan escalate any further, the spokesperson stated that the Secretary of State John Kerry is engaged and talking to senior Indian leadership consistently regarding the matter. India has said Pakistan approaching the UN over the issue of surgical strikes in PoK has not found any resonance in the world body and rejected claims that the UN mission monitoring ceasefire “has not directly observed” any firing along the LoC.India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin dismissed remarks made by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesperson Stephane Dujarric that the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) “has not directly observed any firing across the LoC related to the latest incidents”, a reference to the surgical strikes conducted by India on September 29 targeting terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.Akbaruddin told reporters at the Indian Permanent Mission here yesterday that the facts on the ground do not change whether somebody has “observed” it or not.”I have nothing to say because what (Dujarric) said was ‘directly observed’. It’s a call that they have to take. I cannot place myself in their boots and directly observe something,” the Indian envoy said when asked to comment on Dujarric’s remarks.Akbaruddin said the “facts on the ground do not change whether somebody acknowledges or not. Facts are facts, we presented the facts and that’s where we stand.” India on Thursday carried out surgical strikes on seven terror launch pads across the LoC with the Army inflicting “significant casualties” on terrorists preparing to infiltrate from PoK.When pressed at the daily press briefing to explain how UNMOGIP can say it did not observe any firing even as India said it has conducted the surgical strikes, Dujarric repeated that UNMOGIP has not “directly observed” any of the firing.”They are obviously aware of the reports of these presumed violations and are talking to the relevant concerned authorities,” he had said.Akbaruddin said while Pakistan has reached out to the UN Chief and the 15-nation Council over the issues of the surgical strike and Kashmir, it’s call for intervention by the world body has not found any resonance as there was no further discussion on the matter.”Yesterday there was some action. You are also aware of the reaction,” Akbaruddin said referring to Pakistan’s envoy Maleeha Lodhi meeting New Zealand’s UN Ambassador Gerard van Bohemen, president of the Council for the month of September, and raising in the UNSC the issue of the action by India.”Yesterday the Pakistan ambassador did approach New Zealand. What they didn’t tell you after that was what happened. Did anyone raise anything after what was explained to in the UN Security Council. The answer that I know of is that there was no further discussion of this (surgical strike and Kashmir matter),” Akbaruddin said. He said Pakistan had raised the issues through the New Zealand ambassador in “informal consultations” of the Council.”Was there a resonance. I didn’t hear that, nor did anybody else in those informal consultations. We are a responsible state. It is not our intention to aggravate the situation.”However as a responsible state we will not tolerate any impunity. We will not be indifferent to territory being used to kill innocent citizens of our country,” Akbaruddin said adding that India hopes and expects “support from Pakistan also in that endeavor”.”Ultimately they are committed to a bilateral understanding on this.” The Indian envoy also added that Pakistan had raised the Kashmir issue in the General Assembly but asked how many nations “supported” it.”By my count there were none,” he said adding that there is “no resonance” among UN member states for Pakistan’s claims on Kashmir.”At the high-level General Debate, there was a specific and long Pakistani submission (on Kashmir). I did not hear any resonance of that among any of the member states who took the floor. Ultimately 193 of them took the floor. There was no resonance. If you find anything contrary I’m willing to listen,” Akbaruddin said.Akbaruddin stressed that as a responsible state, India will not be “indifferent to impunity” as an option.”Our approach is that the response (surgical strike) we undertook yesterday…was a measured, proportionate, counter-terrorist strike. It was reflective of our desire to stop a clear and imminent threat. Our objectives have been met and that effort has since ended,” he said.He reiterated that India’s effort as a “responsible state” is to respond proportionately and in a measured manner and achieve its objectives.”In that case, we consider our objectives fulfilled. What spin somebody puts, whether somebody has seen it or not seen it, is not a germane to the issue. That it was undertaken, that we feel that it achieved our objective is important for us as a country,” he said.On whether India has been approached by the office of the Secretary General or the Security Council regarding de-escalation of the situation, Akbaruddin said, “I did not hear any response to the submission (by Pakistan) yesterday.” He said as a normal diplomatic practice, if there are any requests to him or other Indian diplomats on any matter, “it is our job as diplomats to respond to them.” “In the UN we have a very expansive agenda. We have an agenda that deals with peace and security and also climate change, sustainable development goals. It also deals with having a culture of peace integrating and working together with others.”We are focused on that expansive and extensive agenda. We are not a one agenda state,” he said.The surgical strike by India came just days after the attack by Pakistan-based terror outfit JeM on the Indian army camp in Uri in Kashmir that killed 18 jawans.With inputs from agencies
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>India has said Pakistan approaching the UN over the issue of surgical strikes in PoK has not found any resonance in the world body and rejected claims that the UN mission monitoring ceasefire “has not directly observed” any firing along the LoC.India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin dismissed remarks made by Secretary General Ban Ki-moon’s spokesperson Stephane Dujarric that the UN Military Observer Group in India and Pakistan (UNMOGIP) “has not directly observed any firing across the LoC related to the latest incidents”, a reference to the surgical strikes conducted by India on September 29 targeting terror launch pads in Pakistan-occupied Kashmir.Akbaruddin told reporters at the Indian Permanent Mission that the facts on the ground do not change whether somebody has “observed” it or not.”I have nothing to say because what (Dujarric) said was ‘directly observed’. It’s a call that they have to take. I cannot place myself in their boots and directly observe something,” the Indian envoy said when asked to comment on Dujarric’s remarks.Akbaruddin said the “facts on the ground do not change whether somebody acknowledges or not. Facts are facts, we presented the facts and that’s where we stand.” India on Thursday carried out surgical strikes on seven terror launch pads across the LoC with the Army inflicting “significant casualties” on terrorists preparing to infiltrate from PoK.When pressed at the daily press briefing to explain how UNMOGIP can say it did not observe any firing even as India said it has conducted the surgical strikes, Dujarric repeated that UNMOGIP has not “directly observed” any of the firing.”They are obviously aware of the reports of these presumed violations and are talking to the relevant concerned authorities,” he had said.Akbaruddin said while Pakistan has reached out to the UN Chief and the 15-nation Council over the issues of the surgical strike and Kashmir, it’s call for intervention by the world body has not found any resonance as there was no further discussion on the matter.”Yesterday there was some action. You are also aware of the reaction,” Akbaruddin said referring to Pakistan’s envoy Maleeha Lodhi meeting New Zealand’s UN Ambassador Gerard van Bohemen, president of the Council for the month of September, and raising in the UNSC the issue of the action by India.”Yesterday the Pakistan ambassador did approach New Zealand. What they didn’t tell you after that was what happened. Did anyone raise anything after what was explained to in the UN Security Council. The answer that I know of is that there was no further discussion of this (surgical strike and Kashmir matter),” Akbaruddin said.
<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>External Affairs Minister of India Sushma Swaraj arrived here to address the 71st session of the UN General Assembly, with all eyes and ears set on her speech on Monday which is expected to give a stinging response to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s “tirade” on Kashmir.Swaraj arrived on Saturday and will address the UN General Debate on Monday morning.”Leading India’s delegation to the 71st UNGA. EAM @SushmaSwaraj arrives in New York,” Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup said in a tweet.Swaraj is expected to give a stinging response to Sharif’s UNGA speech, in which he had focused elaborately on Kashmir. India’s strong Right of Reply to his speech called Pakistan home to the “Ivy League of Terrorism” and a “terrorist state” that commits “war crimes” by using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.Outlining India’s focus for the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) session, New Delhi’s envoy to the UN Syed Akbaruddin had said that terrorism is the “primary concern” for India as well as for nations across the world.He listed reform of the UN Security Council, sustainable development, climate change and peacekeeping as other priorities for India in the current UNGA session.Swarup told reporters here on September 23 that “the whole world and the entire nation” is waiting to hear from Swaraj who will deliver India’s “vision document” for the 71st UNGA.”We are all looking forward to that,” he had said.He, however did not elaborate on elements of Swaraj’s address but said “the whole world and the entire country is waiting to hear what the external affairs minister has to say but I think the broad themes that Akbaruddin has outlined are definitely going to be a part of our presentation at this most important forum in the international community”.Swarup said one can also expect “a continued focus from India on the theme of terrorism which is today undoubtedly the single biggest challenge to international peace and security”.Exercising the Right of Reply to Sharif’s “long tirade” about the situation in the Indian state of Jammu and Kashmir, First Secretary in the Permanent Mission of India to the UN Eenam Gambler had said, “the worst violation of human rights is terrorism”.”When practiced as an instrument of state policy it is a war crime. What my country and our other neighbours are facing today is Pakistan’s long-standing policy of sponsoring terrorism, the consequences of which have spread well beyond our region,” she said.She had said India sees in Pakistan as “a terrorist state” which channelises billions of dollars, much of it diverted from international aid, to training, financing and supporting terrorist groups as militant proxies against it neighbors.
United Nations: Pakistan’s months-long efforts to internationalise the Kashmir issue at the UN have not found any resonance with nations at the world body that are focuser on combating the growing scourge of terrorism, a top Indian diplomat has said.
India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Syed Akbaruddin said that what is finding resonance among the international community is the terror threat that India is facing and not what Sharif focussed on his speech – the issue of Kashmir.
“If 131 nations have spoken in the General Debate so far, 130 have not referred to the primary issue that Pakistan has raised. So what does that mean,” he told reporters on Friday.
He said “90 per cent” countries that have spoken at the high-level week of the 71st UN General Assembly session have stressed that terrorism is a primary concern for them, adding that India is gratified by the support it is getting with countries increasingly standing up and voicing their support to deal with the menace of terrorism.
Akbaruddin pointed out that in the plethora of bilateral meetings and multilateral engagements that Minister of State for External Affairs M J Akbar held on the sidelines of the General Assembly session, “there was resonance” of India being a victim of terrorism and of solidarity with it.
“The resonance of India being a victim of terrorism, India tackling terrorism diligently has gone way beyond distance. In all bilateral meetings, including with Sri Lanka, there has been resonance and immediate response” on the attack on the army base in Uri, he said.
Citing the example of Akbar’s meeting with leaders of the Community of Latin American and Caribbean States (CELAC), bloc geographically far from India, the envoy said the participants in that meeting expressed their solidarity with India over the Uri attack and voiced concern over the rise of terrorism.
He said during the meeting of SAARC foreign ministers, Akbar raised the issue of terrorism and how India is countering that. The minister thanked all those who expressed support and condolences to India on the tragic Uri incident.
Adviser to Pakistan Prime Minister on Foreign Affairs Sartaj Aziz had attended the SAARC meeting.
When asked if the ministers from India and Pakistan had any exchange at the meeting, Akbaruddin said the meeting was a luncheon and “they were all at the table”.
Ministry of External Affairs spokesperson Vikas Swarup said, “the whole world and the entire nation” is waiting to hear from External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj who will deliver India’s national address at the UNGA on 26 September.
Swarup did not elaborate on elements of Swaraj’s address but said “you can expect a continued focus from India on the theme of terrorism which is today undoubtedly the single biggest challenge to international peace and security.”
Swaraj is expected to give a stinging response to Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s UNGA speech, in which he focused elaborately on Kashmir.
India’s strong Right of Reply to Sharif’s speech called Pakistan home to the “Ivy League” of terrorism and a “terrorist state” that commits “war crimes” by using terrorism as an instrument of state policy.
With a growing call among the international community to put in place a stronger mechanism to combat terrorism, Akbaruddin said India is considering all options, including “voting” to ensure that the seminal Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism is brought into force asserting that the will of the majority cannot be continuously blocked by a limited number of countries.
He said the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism, an initiative that India launched in 1996 to fight against terrorism has seen “enormous” forward movement except for what would be the exclusion from the definition of terrorism.
“That is the debate. As far we are concerned given the crescendo of support in the General Debate, there is a majority that exists in support of that effort. The issue is only a procedural one of how do we convert that majority into a legal document,” he said.
Akbaruddin added that usually legal documents are arrived at by common agreement among all and while that has been the effort so far, it has worked.
“If it requires, we will consider how to move this ahead even if it requires voting. The issue is we will take that call at a time of our choosing. We have waited for this for long, we are considering all options and voting is an option which we will not close.
“Ultimately in democracies and in democratic organisations, the will of the majority cannot be continuously blocked by a limited number of countries who have objections to one small finite part or the other,” he said.
He explained that there are several elements in the exclusion clause, and there are some who would like to remove some exclusions even as they want the CCIT to be stronger.
The Indian envoy added that India is confident if put to a vote, based on what has been talked so many times that there is a large majority in support of that convention.
“It’s only a call that we have to take that at what stage do we convert that majority into a general agreement in the UN process,” he said.
Akbaruddin said reform of the Security Council will also be the focus of India in the current UNGA session.
“This is an ongoing effort. That effort is plugged into our greater approach of having a resurgent India on the global platform,” he said.
United Nations: India has criticised the “disaggregated” counter-terrorism infrastructure of the UN, saying the world community has failed to address the menace of terror and there is a need to have a seamless structure in the world body to tackle the global scourge.
“Terrorism does not fit into the conventional paradigm of threats to peace and security. Yet, today it affects us all, across continents, whether we are from developing or developed world,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin said at a high-level UN General Assembly thematic debate on peace and security.
He expressed concern that terror thrives on and is sustained by its trans-boundary networks for ideology, recruitment, propaganda, funding, arms training and sanctuary.
“However, the global community has failed to address this menace effectively. Here at the United Nations there is a disaggregated counter terrorism infrastructure with no effort to tie them together in a seamless weave under a high level functionary. We need to address this,” Akbaruddin said.
India has been pressing for early adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT), a long-pending legal framework which would make it binding for all countries to deny funds and safe haven to terror groups.
With the objective of providing a comprehensive legal framework to combat terrorism, India took the initiative to pilot a draft CCIT in 1996 but the convention has not yet been adopted as nations have “entangled” themselves on the issue of definition of terrorism.
The Indian envoy also lamented the “endless” process of trying to reform the Security Council even as the world grapples with challenges more diverse in nature than they were when the world body was created 70 years ago.
He emphasised that the structures of global governance have to be made representative to deal with current threats and challenges or else the UN risks becoming “irrelevant”.
“On the one hand we find a growing tendency where issues much broader than the conventional peace and security context are being considered as germane.
“Issues related to the international system of criminal justice, large scale human rights violations, and monitoring compliance with disarmament arrangements are brought onto the agenda of international peace and security stretching the canvas of collective action by the Security Council. At the same time, we are faced with efforts to spin issues of Reform of the Security Council in an endless manner,” he said.
Akbaruddin said while technology, social media and instantaneous transfers of funds have unprecedented benefits, these very same inter-linkages are now also being used for the spread of radical propaganda, extremist ideologies, recruitment of followers beyond national boundaries and spread of terrorist networks.
India has criticised the use of hidden veto by China, blocking its bid at the United Nations (U.N.) to ban Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar.India’s Permanent Representative to the U.N., Syed Akbaruddin told the U.N. Security Council in New York that general members are never informed about the reason for not acceding to requests for sanctioning terrorists.Akbaruddin said this in an open debate on ‘Threats to International Peace and Security Caused by Terrorist Acts’, adding that the procedures of unanimity and anonymity of the Al Qaeda, Taliban and Islamic State Sanctions Committees need to be revisited.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”Counter terror mechanisms such as the Sanctions Committees that act on behalf of the international community need to build trust not engender impunity by the use of this form of a hidden veto,” said Akbaruddin.After the attack on the Pathankot airbase in January, India had in February written to the U.N. calling for immediate action to list Masood Azhar under the U.N. Sanctions Committee.All were told that if there are no objections, the designation will be announced after the expiry of the deadline, but just hours before the deadline, China requested the U.N. committee to keep on hold the designation.China had said any listing would have to meet the requirements, stressing that it was the Council members? responsibility to ensure that the criteria were followed.
Days after China blocked its bid at the UN to ban JeM chief Masood Azhar, India on Thursday slammed use of “hidden veto” and demanded accountability, saying the world body’s general members are never informed of the reason for not acceding to requests for sanctioning terrorists.”The procedures of unanimity and anonymity of the Al Qaeda, Taliban and ISIS Sanctions Committees need to be revisited. The procedures of unanimity and anonymity result in a lack of accountability,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin told the UN Security Council in an open debate on ‘Threats to International Peace and Security Caused by Terrorist Acts’ here.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Against the backdrop of China last month again blocking India’s bid to ban the mastermind of the Pathankot terror attack Masood in the UN Sanctions Committee, Akbaruddin said each of the 15 members in the committee now have a veto.
ALSO READ Need for heart-to-heart talk with China over Masood Azhar: Salman KhurshidWithout naming China, he said none except these 15 members are told of who is it that has wielded the veto in a specific instance.”The general membership of the UN is never ever formally informed of how and why requests for listing terrorists are not acceded to. Counter terror mechanisms such as the Sanctions Committees that act on behalf of the international community need to build trust not engender impunity by the use of this form of a ‘hidden veto’,” Akbaruddin said.
ALSO READ Circus continues, another red-corner notice against Masood AzharAfter the attack on the airbase in Pathankot in January, India had in February written to the UN calling for immediate action to list the chief of the Pakistan-based terror outfit Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) under the UN Sanctions Committee.The Indian submission was considered by the Counter- Terrorism Executive Directorate (CTED) for technical aspects of the evidence provided.
ALSO READ India, China Special Representatives talks on April 20, Masood Azhar issue may figureThe technical team then with the support of the US, UK and France had sent it to all the members, sources had said.All were told that if there are no objections, the designation will be announced after the expiry of the deadline but just hours before the deadline, China requested the UN committee to keep on hold the designation.When asked at a briefing earlier this month as to why China had put a hold on the listing request by India against Azhar, Chinese envoy and President of the Security Council for the month Liu Jieyi had said that any listing would have to meet the requirements, stressing that it was the Council members’ responsibility to ensure that the criteria were followed.
In a major disappointment for India, China collaborated with Pakistan to block New Delhi’s proposal to ban Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar. Following the attack on the Indian Air Force Base in Pathankot, killing seven Indian military personnel, India called on the United Nations for immediate action to list Azhar under the al-Qaida Sanctions Committee. According to sources, 14 out of 15 countries were willing to designate Azhar, but China alone decided to go against all the others in the bid. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>China did not give any reason on their move in their written communication which just says that they want to put a hold on India’s proposition. The US, UK and France had strongly supported the move and the other nations had also expressed their consent to proceed with the action on Azhar. But China, one of the five permanent members of the UN group with veto powers, collaborated with Pakistan to block the bid, sources add.China is now the only country that has stood up for Masood Azhar more than once. Ahead of the Nuclear Summit 2016, India had expressed its desire to ensure that Azhar was proscribed by the UN.“As regards the attack by JeM, we assure you that we will pursue the cause for justice. It is not a cause that we will leave or have forgotten about. I can assure you that we are proceeding with our efforts to ensure that this organisation which is already proscribed by the UN also has its leaders proscribed and that is the primary effort right now,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN, Syed Akbaruddin, told ANI.Meanwhile, Pakistan’s Joint Investigating Team (JIT) that is probing the Pathankot attack reportedly told Indian officials that it is yet to find evidence to link Azhar to the terror attack. The Indian investigators had asked the JIT for the Jaish-e-Mohammed chief’s voice samples but were told that Azhar’s role in the incident is still being verified. India has in the past said Azhar and his brother Abdul Asghar Rauf were directly linked to the attack, which was planned at the JeM headquarters in Bahawalpur.
Congress on Wednesday termed the controversy over chanting of “Bharat Mata ki jai” as “complementary hate mongering” by AIMIM and BJP to further their “agenda of polarisation”.”AIMIM and BJP, which feed upon each other’s divisive and polarising agendas, have often used these slogans to create nonexistent fault lines between communities,” Congress spokesman Abhishek Singhvi said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>He said be it the Owaisi brothers — Asaduddin Owaisi and Akbaruddin Owaisi of AIMIM — or Giriraj Singh and Sakshi Maharaj of BJP or SP’s Azam Khan or BSP’s Shafiq-ur-Rehman Burq, “they do complementary hate mongering to further the agenda of polarisation”.”Be it a public exhortation to not say ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’ and ‘Vande Mataram’ or calls for non-Modi voters to be sent to Pakistan, people pushing such thoughts… singularly with the aim of spreading propaganda that suits their political purpose,” he said.To drive home his point, the Congress leader said be it in the elections of Maharashtra, Bangalore Municipal Elections or Bihar, the “tacit and symbiotic inter-dependability” between BJP and AIMIM is there for everyone to see. Singhvi said ‘Bharat Mata Ki Jai’, ‘Jai Hind’ or ‘Vande Mataram’ are not verses emanating from any scriptures or rule book or statute manual. “These are slogans that emanated out of our national conscience during the freedom struggle and are articulation of our intrinsic feeling towards India – the Motherland, Madar-e-Watan, Matrabhoomi,” he said.He said these are “long standing expressions of our commitment to the concept of India as a nation and resonate voluntarily sans any coercion in the heart and mind of every Indian”.His remarks came on a day when the Maharashtra Assembly suspended an AIMIM MLA till the end of the budget session for refusing to chant ‘Bharat Mata ki jai’.
India has reaffirmed that new permanent members in a reformed Security Council must get veto power but suggested that its use be deferred to a review conference as “a willingness for compromise”.”Our own national position has been and remains that the veto should as long as it exists be extended to new permanent members,” India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin said here on Wednesday. “As a measure of flexibility and willingness for compromise, the use of the veto can be deferred till the Review Conference. The African Union (and this is understandable) does not wish to defer use. The difference, we see, as one of a degree than one of a kind,” he said.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>A review conference is a platform provided by the UN Charter for the member states to discuss changes to any reforms achieved in the near-term, and for revisiting negotiables that cannot be agreed upon. India has in the past also said that it would consider deferring the use of the veto until a future scheduled review conference. Given the hard lines among member states on the use of the veto and differences among them over the issue, Akbaruddin asserted that the issue of veto cannot be allowed to block the process of Security Council reform itself.”The issue of veto is important but then we cannot also allow the veto to have a veto over the process of Council reform itself,” he said during the informal plenary meeting of the Inter-Governmental Negotiations (IGN) on ‘Question of Veto’. Akbaruddin appealed to the chair of the IGN to consolidate the negotiating text on the basis of convergence reached on issues so far while also delineating the divergence and the contrarian view of some. He stressed that that chair should ask member states to build further on the consolidated and shortened text.Historical perspectiveGiving an elaborate historical perspective on the use of the veto in the 70-year history of the UN, Akbaruddin said from the time the Security Council was created in 1946 till today, 317 vetoes have been cast and as result 230 draft resolutions or parts thereof have been vetoed in total. In effect, 10 per cent of the 2271 resolutions adopted till date have been vetoed.He further underscored that apart from the use of the veto within the Security Council, there have been expansion of the veto to the Council’s subsidiary bodies such as the Sanctions Committees.He said in these bodies, the veto has been extended to all 15 members of the Committees who can block, or object or place on hold any request of a Member State, thereby in effect killing the proposal on grounds that consensus is required.Reaction to ChinaAkbaruddin remarks come against the backdrop of China, a permanent UNSC member with veto power, blocking India’s move last year in the UN for action against Pakistan for the release of 26/11 mastermind Zaki-ur Rehman Lakhvi from jail. “As the well-known idiom goes, ‘if it walks like a duck and quacks like a duck it is a duck.’ Yes… we have by a procedural stratagem expanded the veto to all members of the subsidiary bodies of the Security Council far from restraining its use,” he said.He stressed that given the history of the use of veto, it is not surprising that a significant number of member states call for abolition of the veto or to limit and curtail its use to the extent possible. Several other member states also support voluntary restrictions on the use of veto in situations such as genocide, war crimes, crimes against humanity, ethnic cleansing and gross human rights violations.While some member states belong to the school of thought that restrictions should be placed on the use of the veto, there are others who want no restrictions to be placed on the veto, Akbaruddin said. “For them, history stopped in 1945. To them, all subsequent changes: the vast expansion in membership, the anti-colonial and anti-apartheid triumphs, the march of freedom; the growth of equality; all have not happened and should not be taken into account. Multilateralism means nothing; plurilateralism is the order of the day. The majority may not like it; so much the worse for the majority,” he said.Aligning India’s position with the L.69 group of developing countries, as well as with the G-4, Akbaruddin said the two largest groups of Africa and L.69 are of the view that the veto should be abolished but as long as it exists, it should be extended to all members of the permanent category of the Security Council, who “must enjoy all prerogatives and privileges of permanent membership in the permanent category including the right of the veto”.
United Nations: The history of Africans who came to India as slaves and rose to lofty heights as princes and generals shows the country’s tradition of openness, India’s UN Permanent Representative Syed Akbaruddin said on Tuesday.
Speaking at the inauguration of an exhibition, “Africans in India: From Slaves to Generals,” he said India may have shortcomings, but it has always been and strives to be an open and welcoming society overcoming prejudice.
Akbaruddin, who was the chief coordinator of last year’s India-Africa Summit in New Delhi, said that the continent’s leaders at the meeting who visited the exhibition in India “were as surprised as us” to see how those Africans had achieved positions of power and influence. Opportunities for the African diaspora to excel continued in India today, he said mentioning Ugochi Latoya Igwilo, a Nigerian who is among India’s top models.
The exhibition’s curator, Sylviane A Diouf, said it illustrates the richness and diversity of the African diaspora and their contribution around the world to language, culture, literature, diplomacy and the military.
India was the only society where slavery was not a barrier to social ascendancy of Africans and it was an inspiration to the diaspora, she said. When the exhibition was shown in Harlem in New York, she recounted that the African-American visitors identified with it and said. “We are so grateful to learn about our ancestors.”
School students from the Bronx who saw the exhibition were inspired to go to India for a class trip instead of to Paris, she said. In India they met the Sidhis, the descendants of the Africans who came from the eastern part of the continent as slaves and achieved powerful positions. They figure in the exhibition.
Diouf said the exhibition would travel around the world to 25 countries, where it would be shown at UN information centres, and the texts accompanying the exhibits were being translated into Arabic, French, Portuguese and Spanish.
UN Undersecretary General for Communications, Cristina Gallach, called the exhibition “extraordinary” and a “celebration of the culture of the African diaspora.” She said their experience was a “tribute to their courage and to the open-mindedness of Indian society at that time.”
The exhibition is cosponsored by the Indian Mission to the UN and the UN’s Department of Public Information in association with the Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture. Along with Diouf, the director of the the Lapidus Center for the Historical Analysis of Transatlantic Slavery, the exhibition is co-curated by Kenneth X. Robbins, an expert in the history of the Africans in India and co-editor of “Africans Elites in India: Habshi Amarat.”
The exhibition features paintings of Africans in India and photographs of their architectural heritage. Some of the remarkable people, whose story is told in the exhibition, include Malik Ambar, an Abyssinian who rose to become the regent of the Nizamshahi dynasty of Ahmednagar in the 17th century; Ikhlas Khan, another Abyssinian who was the regent of the Deccan sultanate of Bijapur in the 16th century, and Sidi Haider Khan, the last ruler of the princely state of Sachin founded by African Sufi Sidis in Gujarat.
The Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) counting has started and the parties contesting this election are Congress, BJP, TDP, AIMIM and Telangana Rasthra Samithi (TRS). The counting was earlier scheduled for 8 AM in the morning but it was delayed to 3 PM. Reportedly, 33,60,543 voters out of 74,23,980 cast their votes, including one voter who had Salman Khan’s id card and name. The election will test the TRS’s strength in Hyderabad and has been in the news for their victory in the Warangal Lok Sabha elections <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>(Watch: Akbaruddin Owasi says with Narendra Modi he can wipe out Congress from the country)The counting of votes began at 3:30 PM in 24 centres and security has been tightened across the city. The 1st round of counting has almost been completed at most centres and results will be declared after Puranapul. Currently TRS lead in Madhapur, with 973 and Miyapoor 458 votes. The Puranapul re-polling ended at 4:30 PM and 43% votes were registered. (Read: When Salman Khan’s named turned up on a voter ID card)According to early media reports, the TRS making big gains winning 102 seats, whereas NDA ally TDP is facing a massive set-back while Congress is virtually wiped out compared to 52 in 209. Among the biggest upsets was Congress former mayor Kartheeka Reddy getting defeated by TRS in Tarkana, Kondapur TRS candidate Hameed Patel winning, Congress’ mayor candidate Vikram Goud losing and former Hyderabad Mayor Banda Karthika Reddy of Cong party lost the GHMC election at ward. Parties Leading 2009 position 2016 Position Telangana Rashtra Samithi (TRS) 36 0 69 Telugu Desam Party (TDP) 3 45 1 Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP) 1 5 2 All India Majlis-e-Ittehadul Muslimeen (MIM) 25 43 10 Congress (INC) 2 52 1 Others 0 5 0
In a video that has recently surfaced on YouTube, AIMIM Chief Asaduddin Owaisi’s brother, Akbaruddin, is heard saying that he with PM Narnedra Modi can wipe out Congress from the country. In the video, Owaisi says, “Narendra Modi ke saath mein, saare desh mein Congress saaf karoonga.” (Alongwith Narendra Modi, I will wipe out Congress from the entire country.)The video is believed to be from January 30, when the party was campaigning just before the Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation elections. <!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>Watch the video here:
Opposition parties in Telangana on Wednesday requested Governor E S L Narasimhan to instruct the State Government to arrest MIM chief Asaduddin Owaisi and his MLA-brother Akbaruddin for their alleged involvement in attack on their leaders during civic polls.An all-party delegation led by Opposition leader K Jana Reddy, which met the Governor and submitted a memorandum, also demanded an inquiry into the incidents of attacks on some of the Opposition leaders during Greater Hyderabad Municipal Corporation (GHMC) polls on Tuesday.<!– /11440465/Dna_Article_Middle_300x250_BTF –>”We request you to kindly order a detailed inquiry in the entire episode and also demand immediate arrest of Sri Asaduddin Owaisi, Member of Parliament, Sri Akbaruddin Owaisi MLA, and his followers who attacked public representatives,” the memorandum said.The leaders requested the Governor to direct the State Government to provide additional security to Telangana Congress President Uttam Kumar Reddy and Mohammad Shabbir Ali, another party leader, in view of the “attacks” on them.Ali, Leader of Opposition in Telangana Legislative Council, has filed a complaint against Asaduddin and his followers for allegedly assaulting him in Mirchowk area. Akbaruddin, the MLA from Chandrayangutta, has been booked for his alleged involvement in the attack on M K Mahender, a BJP civic poll candidate.Earlier, speaking at an all-party meet, Jana Reddy said the Governor has power to oversee law and order in the State capital under Section 8 of AP Reorganisation Act, 2014.”This (attacks) is height of violation of law and failure of the Government. MIM cadres abused Congress leaders and damaged vehicles. The Governor has a role to keep law and order in the city under Section 8 (of Reorganisation Act).”BJP Floor leader in the Assembly K Laxman said the party candidate attacked by MIM followers belonged to SC community and hence a case under SC/ST (Prevention of Atrocities) Act be registered against them.Telangana TDP President L Ramana said Opposition leaders will meet Union Home Minister, Prime Minister and President and apprise them of about the law and order situation in the State.