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China Again Blocks India's Proposal on Masood Azhar
Apr 18, 2016

In a major disappointment for India, China collaborated with Pakistan to block India's proposal to ban Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar. Following the attack on the Indian Air Force Base in Pathankot, killing seven Indian military personnel, India called on the United Nations for immediate action to list Azhar under the al-Qaida Sanctions Committee.

  • Ahead of the Nuclear Summit 2016, India had expressed its desire to ensure that Azhar was proscribed by the UN.

  • 14 out of 15 countries were willing to designate Azhar, but China alone decided to go against all the others in the bid.

  • China did not give any reason on their move in their written communication which just says that they want to put a hold on India's proposition.

  • The US, UK and France had strongly supported the move and the other nations had also expressed their consent to proceed with the action on Azhar.

  • But China, one of the five permanent members of the UN group with veto powers, collaborated with Pakistan to block the bid.
  • China is now the only country that has stood up for Masood Azhar more than once.

India's Permanent Representative to the UN, Syed Akbaruddin said, “As regards the attack by JeM, we assure you that we will pursue the cause for justice. It is not a cause that we will leave or have forgotten about. I can assure you that we are proceeding with our efforts to ensure that this organisation which is already proscribed by the UN also has its leaders proscribed and that is the primary effort right now."
 
Meanwhile, Pakistan's Joint Investigating Team (JIT) that was probed the Pathankot attack reportedly told Indian officials that it is yet to find evidence to link Azhar to the terror attack. The Indian investigators had asked the JIT for the Jaish-e-Mohammed chief's voice samples but were told that Azhar's role in the incident is still being verified.

  • India has in the past said Azhar and his brother Abdul Asghar Rauf were directly linked to the attack, which was planned at the JeM headquarters in Bahawalpur.

  • India also told the UN Sanctions Committee that not listing Azhar would expose it and other countries in South Asia to threats from the terror group and its leader.

  • The India submission was considered by the Counter-Terrorism Executive Directorate (CTED) for technical aspects of the evidence provided. The technical team then with the support of the US, UK and France had sent it to all the members.

The UN had banned JeM in 2001 but India's efforts to ban Azhar after the Mumbai terror attack also did not fructify as China, one of the five permanent members of the UN group with veto powers, didn't allow the ban apparently at the behest of Pakistan again.


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