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China to block UN ban on Masood Azhar, yet again

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping shake hands as they pose for a photo on September 5, 2017 during a meeting on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit in Xiamen in southeastern China’s Fujian Province. The meeting, termed “excellent,” raised hopes that China will not block the Masood Azhar ban at the United Nations.

Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping shake hands as they pose for a photo on September 5, 2017 during a meeting on the sidelines of the BRICS Summit in Xiamen in southeastern China’s Fujian Province. The meeting, termed “excellent,” raised hopes that China will not block the Masood Azhar ban at the United Nations.   | Photo Credit: AP

Cites ‘lack of consensus’ for not designating JeM chief as a global terrorist

Citing a lack of “consensus,” China has said on Monday that it is once again not designating Masood Azhar, head of Pakistan-based militant group Jaish-e-Mohammad, as an international terrorist.

The Chinese position, expressed by its Foreign Ministry spokesperson, Hua Chunying, came ahead of Thursday’s meeting of the 1267 committee of the United Nations Security Council, where Azhar’s status would be discussed.

Xi-Modi’s “excellent” meeting

Chinese President Xi Jinping and Prime Minister Narendra Modi had apparently held an “excellent” meeting at the sidelines of the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) summit in Xiamen in September, raising a slim possibility that Beijing may change tack on Azhar during this month’s UN conclave.

“We have made our position clear many times from this podium. The relevant resolutions of the security council have clear stipulations as to the mandate to the 1267 committee and also clear stipulations when it comes to listing of relevant organisations and individuals,” said Ms. Hua.

She added: “As for listing the application by the relevant country, there are disagreements. China raised the technical hold so as to allow for more time for all parties to deliberate on this matter. To our regret the committee so far has yet to reach a consensus.”

"Pakistan is a victim of terrorism"

Asked whether China was resisting the ban on account of its special ties with Islamabad, Ms. Hua said: “I can understand why you raised this question but cannot side with what you said. China always upholds the principle of objectivity and fairness and we judge this matter on its own merits.”

The spokeswoman stressed that Pakistan itself was a “victim of terrorism.”

“You mentioned Pakistan. Pakistan is also a victim of terrorism and we support Pakistan in countering terrorism in accordance with its own national conditions.”

China had repeatedly imposed a “technical hold” on India’s application for banning Azhar, who has been accused of masterminding last year’s attack on an Indian Air Force base. In January, the United States filed a fresh application, backed by Britain and France after India’s filing on Azhar’s listing had lapsed last year.

 

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Printable version | Jul 10, 2020 3:01:13 AM | https://www.thehindu.com/news/international/china-to-block-un-ban-on-masood-azhar/article19949628.ece

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