As India began its two-year tenure in the 15-nation United Nations Security this month, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar struck a defiant note and took a thinly-veiled dig at China as he lambasted the country for seeking to protect Pakistan sponsored terrorists.
Jaishankar said that the practice of placing blocks and holds without “any rhyme or reason on requests to designate terrorists and terror groups must end” which is believed to be an apparent reference to China who repeatedly blocked India’s bid to designate Pakistan sponsored terrorist Masood Azhar as a global terrorist.
S Jaishankar also claimed that those who cover up for the terrorists are equally culpable. “We must not countenance double standards in this battle. Terrorists are terrorists; there are no good and bad ones. Those who propagate this distinction have an agenda. And those who cover up for them are just as culpable,” said the External Affairs Minister.
“Accordingly, we must reform the working methods of the Committees dealing with Sanctions and Counter Terrorism. Transparency, accountability and effectiveness are the need of the day. The practice of placing blocks and holds on listing requests without any rhyme or reason must end. This only erodes our collective credibility,” said S Jaishankar during his first address to the UNSC after India began its two-year tenure on the body.
S Jaishankar also added that enlisting and delisting individuals and entities under the UN sanctions regimes must be done objectively, and not for political or religious considerations.
India’s External Affairs Minister Jaishankar was speaking at the UNSC Ministerial Meeting on Threats to international peace and security caused by terrorist acts: International cooperation in combating terrorism 20 years after the adoption of resolution 1373 (2001).
For the uninitiated, China protected its vassal state Pakistan, tooth and nail, as it repeatedly blocked India’s attempts to list Masood Azhar as a global terrorist at the UN for ten long years. Beijing’s insistence on holding the proposal to blacklist the Pakistan based terrorist finally ended in May 2019, as India registered a massive diplomatic victory when the United Nations slapped sanctions against Azhar. The fact that China lifted its hold on the proposal to slap sanctions on Masood Azhar was seen as a huge victory for India in the diplomatic circles. Foreign Minister Jaishankar took a dig at China for the same.
While China has managed to infiltrate the United Nations and its specialised agencies with its stooges, India’s entry at the UNSC for the next two years will pose a formidable challenge to China. And, S Jaishankar’s thinly-veiled dig at China is its proof.