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Statement by Ambassador Bhagwant Singh Bishnoi, Acting...
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Statement by Ambassador Bhagwant S Bishnoi, Acting Permanent Representative of India to the United Nations in the UNSC Open
Debate on Terrorism and Cross-Border Crime on 19 December, 2014.

 

Mr.  President,

Let me begin by thanking you for organizing this debate on 'Threats to International Peace and Security: Terrorism and Cross-Border Crime'.  I also thank the Under Secretary General for Political Affairs and the Permanent Observer of the African Union for their useful briefings.  I will avail of this opportunity to also compliment your delegation for the very comprehensive concept note that has been prepared.
India has been a victim of terrorism for over two and a half decades.  In our view, which we share with most members of the international community, there can be no reason or motivation that can possibly justify terrorism.  Terrorism is the most heinous of crimes for which the international community can only have a policy of zero tolerance.

 

The fact that terrorism is an international problem that can only be tackled collectively is something that is most clearly known to all of us who have suffered it most.  Terrorism is an international phenomenon, it is international in its organization and international in its effects.  International solidarity is required to meet an international threat.  Countries that have been preyed upon by a global network of terrorism simply cannot cope with the challenge alone.

 

Mr. President,

All terrorist organizations - be it Daesh, or Al Shabaab, or Lashkar-e-Tayyaba or the Al Qaida - have an ideological basis that contradicts the basic tenets of humanity.  Ideology alone, however, is not enough to sustain terrorists.  They need sustained financing and space to operate.  That is, unfortunately, provided to them.

 

Mr. President,

The concept  note rightly draws attention to the fact that financing is often supplemented by illegal resources generated through drug trafficking, piracy, kidnapping for ransom, extortion, etc.  Apart from generating resources, these activities also create conditions for the growth and proliferation of terrorist networks.   The revenue generated from poppy cultivation in Afghanistan has more often than not found its way to the Taliban and other terrorist network in that country.

 

Mr. President,

Listing of a terrorist organization is supposed to lead to travel bans, freezing of assets and an arms embargo.  In other words, cutting off the lifeline that sustains terrorism.  This, unfortunately, does not always happen.  Lashkar-e-Tayyaba, was able to orchestrate an attack on the Indian Consulate in Heart, Afghanistan in May this year.  They are a listed organization.  Their role in the attack has been documented in the latest report of the Al Qaida and Taliban Monitoring Team.  Lashker-e-Tayyaba obviously does not live on love and fresh air.  They have more than adequate funding.  Regrettably, there seems to be little that the Council's Sanction Committees can do about such violations of the sanction regime.  This is area which would benefit from consideration by the Council.

 

Mr. President,

The concept note mentions the strategic impact of terrorism and cross border crime.  It very correctly makes a point that cross border crimes weaken the state, including its military and police capabilities.  Examples from Somalia and Mali where cross border crimes facilitate terrorism and make terrorist groups even more formidable than the state are indeed apt.   We also agree with the assessment that there is potential for the Council to explore tools that would degrade the ability of terrorist groups to take advantage of cross border crimes.  Given the gravity of the problem, and given its universality, we would urge open and complete consultation with member states who are not member of the Council as well.

 

Mr. President,

I will take this opportunity to also draw attention to the fact that there is unfinished business in the General Assembly as well.  Leaders, in the 2005 Summit, had decided that expeditious action would be taken to finalize the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism.  That, however, has not happened.  The price that we pay for procrastination is in human lives.  That should not be allowed to continue.  Terrorism takes away the foremost of human rights, the right to life.  It is truly a crime against humanity.

 

I thank you Mr. President.

******

 


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