'Double standards' will only undermine efforts to combat terror

Masood Azhar

China today has once again blocked the move to have terrorist Masood Azhar, who heads the Jaish-e-Mohammed, blacklisted by the UN.

The Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) said it was deeply disappointed by China's decision to block the United Nations move once again.

"India strongly believes that double standards will only undermine global community's resolve to combat terrorism", the MEA said. "We can only hope that there will be a realization that accommodating with terrorism for narrow objectives is both short sighted and counter-productive", said Kumar.

In August, China extended by three months a block it had put on the proposal to list Azhar as a global terrorist after obstructing the move in February.

But China, a member of the U.N. Security Council, has repeatedly put a technical hold on the Indian request citing a lack of consensus, a claim India rejects.

Such decisions must be based on cast-iron evidence and fully backed by members of the United Nations panel charged with implementing resolutions relating to sanctions on militant groups and individuals, Foreign Ministry spokeswoman Hua Chunying said two days back.

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The comment came as the China's technical hold on a proposal by the US, France and Britain to list Azhar as a global terrorist was set to lapse on Thursday.

"The Committee is yet to reach an agreement". Last year, China had done the same to stall India's application before the same Committee.

China had once again blocked the move in February to designate Azhar who India alleges was the mastermind behind the Pathankot terror attack previous year. All other 14 countries of the 15-member security council supported the move by the United States and France, news agency PTI said.

The wrangling over Masood Azhar, a longtime Indian foe, has become a thorny issue in ties between China and India. China's actions are meant to ensure that we safeguard the authority and effectiveness of this committee and we will continue to follow the mandate of the committee and rules of procedure, and remain in constant communication and coordination with all members of the committee. The veto will create new friction with India, which has been pressing for sanctions that would freeze Masood Azhar's assets and ban global travel from Pakistan, where he lives.

China in the past had asked India to discuss the issue directly with Pakistan in order to reach an understanding on Azhar's listing.

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