Pulwama Was Just A Trigger: India’s UN Envoy on Azhar’s Listing

India’s UN Ambassador Syed Akbaruddin explains the factors that went behind blacklisting of JeM’s Masood Azhar.

2 min read

“Big, small, all join together,” tweeted India’s permanent representative to the United Nations, Syed Akbaruddin, after Pakistan-based Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar was listed as a global terrorist at the international forum on 1 May 2019.

This came in the light of China’s decision to lift its hold on the proposal to blacklist Azhar. After blocking his listing as a global terrorist four times, China’s change in its stance was welcomed by all the members of the United Nations Security Council (UNSC).

Soon after, speaking to Bloomberg Quint, Akbaruddin spoke about what went behind getting Azhar listed as a global terrorist. Stressing on the importance of diplomacy as the primary tool to further these talks at the international forum, he added that “Pulwama was the trigger for this effort, but the effort precedes Pulwama.”

“Diplomacy is the art of negotiations. And negotiations presupposes ‘give and take.’ Therefore, it is the art of consultation, towards working together to a common objective. As diplomats, we work with our colleagues from various countries, in this case, all members of the security council.”
Syed Akbaruddin to BloombergQuint

He also elaborated on the need to strengthen the negotiations by effectively communicating the gravity of the situation to the members of the council.

“The effort was to indicate to them and to communicate to the members of the security council that they were acting on concert against an individual. An individual who has a track record of being involved in unsavory activities against States, especially India.”
Syed Akbaruddin to BloombergQuint

‘Thankful To UK, US, France’

He said that since India is not a part of UNSC, the efforts of other countries has been highly appreciated.

“We're thankful to many countries who got this done. Especially those who worked as designates for this effort – UK, US, France as well as the chairperson of the 1267 Security Council Committee, the ambassador of Indonesia, who at crucial stages was able to use deft diplomacy to achieve a consensual outcome in the committee,” said Akbaruddin.


‘Pulwama Only A Catalyst, Don’t Mix The Two’

He spoke on another important event, the Pulwama attack that took place on 14 February 2019 and which contributed to the upsurge of getting Azhar listed.

He explicitly stated that on 21 February, UN had issued a stand-alone statement on Pulwama which highlighted that JeM had taken responsibility for the attack and that the perpetrators should be brought to justice.

He said, “That issue had been settled on 21 February... the listing began only after that. So, why are we re-litigating things that have already been established?”

“Pulwama was the trigger for this effort, but the effort precedes Pulwama. Therefore, the effort has to fit into the framework of the history. So, Pulwama was the catalyst that ensured that the effort succeeded.”
Syed Akbaruddin, India’s UN Ambassador.

The move has come after New Delhi had approached the world body for the first time regarding this issue. In the past, China had blocked the listing of Azhar as a global terrorist four times. Soon, an UNSC designation will also subject Azhar to an assets freeze, travel ban and an arms embargo.

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