NEW DELHI: Criticizing Beijing’s move to block India’s proposal to list Pathankot terror attack mastermind and chief of JeM Masood Azhar as a designated terrorist by the UN, New Delhi has termed the move as "unfortunate blow" and a step that confirms prevalence of double standards in the fight against terrorism.
Reacting sharply, MEA Spokesperson Vikas Swarup said the decision by Beijing is surprising as China itself has been affected by the scourge of terrorism and has declared opposition to all forms of terrorism. As a consequence of this decision, the UN Security Council has again been prevented from acting against the leader of a listed terrorist organization.
"The inability of the international community to list its leader Masood Azhar is an unfortunate blow to the concerted efforts to effectively counter all forms of terrorism, and confirms prevalence of double standards in the fight against terrorism,’ MEA said in a statement issued in the evening.
Officials said that with China blocking India's proposal, which was submitted in February to the 1267 Sanctions Committee of the UN Security Council, New Delhi has to make a fresh listing request for Azhar to be banned by the global body. After its submission, China twice imposed "technical" hold on the Indian proposal. However, India said it will continue to push forward with resolute determination "through the use of all options available with us to bring perpetrators of terrorist violence to justice".
External Affairs Ministry also said, "We note with concern China's decision to block the proposal to list Masood Azhar.
"The international community is aware that the Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed which is proscribed by the United Nations, has been responsible for innumerable terrorist attacks on India including the Pathankot Air Base attack.
"As a consequence of this decision, the UN Security Council has again been prevented from acting against the leader of a listed terrorist organisation. We had expected China would have been more understanding of the danger posed to all by terrorism and would join India and others in fighting the common challenge of terrorism," Vikas Swarup added.