Reiterating that the West Asia region remains of vital importance, India, on Tuesday said that the continued blockade of Gaza and denial of essential supplies of food and medicine has created a humanitarian crisis of immense proportion.

While condemning the Israeli attack on the ship carrying humanitarian aid to Gaza, India deplored the tragic loss of life and injuries to people on the flotilla. “There can be no justification for such indiscriminate use of force,” Anand Sharma, Commerce Minister and Prime Minister’s special envoy to the third Eurasian summit on security and economic cooperation said.

The minister told the world leaders it was India’s firm conviction that lasting peace and security in the region can be achieved only through peaceful dialogue and not by use of force. The third summit of the Conference on Interaction and Confidence Building Measures in Asia [CICA] is being attended by heads of States and ministers from 20 member countries. Vietnam and Iraq have been admitted as the two new members at this summit. Mr. Sharma also called for an early adoption of a comprehensive convention on international terrorism as it would be an important contribution towards strengthening the international legal framework against terrorism. Without naming any nation, he said India has consistently underlined the need for all countries to act decisively to dismantle the infrastructure of terrorism and to effectively deal with these groups that have chosen to perpetrate acts of indiscriminate violence. “The choice before us is stark: we need to decisively act against this menace,” he told the three-day conference that opened on Monday,

Nuclear terrorism

Sharing international concerns on possible nuclear terrorism, he pointed out that India has drawn attention to the danger of nuclear materials and technology falling into the hands of terrorists,

On the recent developments in Europe coming on the heels of the financial crisis, he said it has demonstrated the fragility of the global economic architecture and the risks associated with unsustainable lending patterns. “CICA members, drawn mostly from developing countries are important stakeholders in the global economic and financial recovery,” he told the multi-nation grouping that seeks to enhance regional security, stability, peace and economic cooperation.