Pakistan has been invited to the closing ceremony, on October 13, of the ongoing Joint Anti-Terror Exercise (JATE) under the ambit of the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) being hosted by India, official and diplomatic sources confirmed..
“The Pakistan delegation has been extended an invitation for the closing ceremony on the last day of JATE ‘Manesar Anti-Terror 2022’,” diplomatic sources said, which was also confirmed by other official sources.
The National Security Guard (NSG) is hosting the multinational JATE “Manesar Anti-Terror 2022” under the framework of the SCO Regional Anti-Terrorist Structure (RATS), at the NSG Manesar Garrison.
It’s understood that a Pakistan team is participating in the event as a member of the SCO, an official source said. India also participated in RATS meet that Pakistan had organised last year, the source noted.
An Indian delegation had participated in the closing ceremony of the two-week-long JATE-2021 hosted by Pakistan at the National Counter Terrorism Centre, Pabbi, in Khyber Pukhtunkhwa, in September 2021.
The exercise is aimed at exchanging expertise and best practices, and build synergy between the Counter Terrorism Forces of the SCO RATS member countries to enhance capabilities for conducting anti-terrorist operations and countering other security threats collectively, the NSG said in a statement.
In May, counter-terror officials of Pakistan, Russia, China and four Central Asian countries met in Delhi under the structure as India assumed its role as Chairperson of the SCO-RATS mechanism in October 2021. JATE is an annual counter-terrorist exercise held within the framework of the SCO RATS.
The statement issued by the NSG on Sunday said that Stage-1 of the exercise was conducted from July 27 to August 1, 2022 by the National Counter Terrorism Forces (NCTF) of SCO member countries in their respective territories. “Stage-2 of the Exercise is being conducted from October 08 to 13 at NSG Manesar Garrison, in which eight representatives from NCTF of Republic of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Republic of Uzbekistan, Russian Federation and NSG of Republic of India are participating,” it stated.
The exercise will be witnessed by four “observers” from the Executive Committee (EC) of RATS and one observer from the State Committee for National Security of Tajikistan. It will culminate in a closing ceremony which will be attended by high-level delegations from EC RATS, including permanent representatives, delegates from SCO member countries, representatives of the diplomatic missions of SCO member countries in India, and representatives of international organisations collaborating with RATS SCO and national delegates from India, the NSG said.
The exercise will provide a platform to the participating member countries to enhance their operational capabilities and exchange experience in combating terrorism, separatism and extremism, which are common regional security challenges, the statement added.