India has a policy of zero-tolerance against terrorism: Govt

NEW DELHI: India has a policy of “zero tolerance” on terrorism and believes in collective global efforts to counter the menace, Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan said on Thursday in the backdrop of developments in Afghanistan.

The minister said in the Rajya Sabha that India continued its engagement on issues related to Afghanistan, including terrorism and radicalisation, with international stakeholders and regional partners.

“India has a historical and civilizational relationship with Afghanistan. As a contiguous neighbour and long-standing partner of Afghanistan, India is concerned about the recent developments in that country,” he said.

“Government of India has a policy of ‘zero tolerance on terrorism and believes in collective efforts of the international community to counter the menace,” Muraleedharan added.

He was replying to a question on whether the government is considering forging a cooperative approach for tackling threats such as terrorism and radicalisation in the aftermath of the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul.

“India continued its engagement on issues related to Afghanistan, including terrorism and radicalisation, with the international stakeholders and regional partners at various fora,” he said.

“In this regard, the Prime Minister participated in the SCO-CSTO (Collective Security Treaty Organisation) Summit and the G-20 Extraordinary Summit on Afghanistan,” the minister said.

He also mentioned the UN Security Council Resolution (UNSCR) 2593 on Afghanistan.

The resolution, adopted on August 30 under India’s presidency of the global body, talked about the need for upholding human rights in Afghanistan, demanded that Afghan territory should not be used for terrorism and that a negotiated political settlement should be found to the crisis.

Muraleedharan also referred to the India-hosted regional dialogue on Afghanistan on November 10 that was attended by NSAs of Russia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

He said an outcome document, Delhi Declaration, was issued. It reflected the “regional consensus” on major issues of regional stability and security.

“On December 10, India hosted a ministerial-level special session on ‘Afghanistan’ on the sidelines of the third India-Central Asia Dialogue which was chaired by the External Affairs Minister and was attended by the foreign ministers of the Central Asian countries,” the minister said.

He also referred to Prime Minister Narendra Modi hosting the first India-Central Asia Summit, attended by the presidents of the Central Asian Republics, on January 27.

“During the meeting, the leaders discussed the evolving situation in Afghanistan including issues related to terrorism and radicalisation,” Muraleedharan said.



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