'One nation in South Asia is spreading terror in the region'

Prime Minister Narendra Modi during a meeting with U.K. Prime Minister Theresa May at the G20 summit in Hangzhou, China on Monday.  

Without naming Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi, on Monday, used the G-20 forum to assert that “one single nation” in South Asia is spreading “agents of terror”, amid calls for the imposition of sanctions against those who sponsor the menace.

In an obvious reference to Islamabad, Mr. Modi said: “Indeed one single nation in South Asia is spreading these agents of terror in countries of our region.”

The Prime Minister lauded the G20 initiative on countering terror financing, pointing out that that all countries should meet the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) standards.

“The growing forces of violence and terror pose a fundamental challenge. There are some nations that use it as an instrument of state policy. India has a policy of zero tolerance to terrorism. Because anything less than that is not enough,” Mr. Modi said. “For us a terrorist is a terrorist."

Analysts say that Mr. Modi’s “internationalisation” at the G-20 of Pakistan’s alleged support for terrorism, is likely to fuel the war of words between New Delhi and Islamabad, following the spike in violence in the Kashmir Valley after the killing of Burhan Wani, a commander of the Hizbul Mujahideen on July 8.

The Prime Minister’s hard-hitting remarks extended his observations on Sunday during the informal meeting of the Brazil-Russia-India-China-South Africa (BRICS) on the sidelines of the G-20. During that meeting, he had highlighted that terror groups “in South Asia and for that matter anywhere do not own banks and factories”. “Clearly someone funds and arms them and the BRICS must intensify its joint efforts not only to fight terror, but to coordinate actions to isolate those who are supporters and sponsors of terror.”

The “supply chains [of terrorism] and reach are global, [and] abuse of social media to remote radical ideology is a growing dimension of this threat”.

Meets British Prime Minister

The Prime Minister’s counter-terrorism theme also resonated strongly during his meeting on Monday with British Prime Minister, Theresa May. Foreign Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup said during an afternoon briefing that Prime Minister told Ms. May that terrorism posed “the biggest threat and danger to the world and knows no boundaries”.

He alluded to Ms. May’s previous stint as Home Secretary, underscoring that she was well aware of the dangers of terrorism. The Prime Minister pointed out that the recent meeting of the India-U.K. Joint Working Group on Counter Terrorism had been very useful. He also called for greater collaboration in the area of cyber security and intelligence sharing, the spokesperson observed.

The two leaders discussed further enhancement of the defence partnership, which included the Prime Minister’s reference to the Make in India, where British military firms were welcome to participate. Fresh from his visit to the United States, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar is expected to visit Britain shortly.

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Printable version | Jan 27, 2022 2:21:00 AM |

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