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India: Categorisation of terrorism dangerous

UNITED NATION, March 10 — India has said that the tendency to categorise terrorism on the basis of motivations behind terrorist acts is “dangerous” and asserted that all kinds of terror attacks, whether motivated by Islamophobia, anti-Sikh, anti-Buddhist or anti-Hindu prejudices, are condemnable.

India’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ambassador Ruchira Kamboj has said that the international community needs to stand guard against new terminologies and false priorities that can dilute its focus of combatting the scourge of terrorism.

“The tendency of categorisation of terrorism based on the motivations behind terrorist acts is dangerous and goes against the accepted principles that ‘terrorism in all its forms and manifestations should be condemned and there cannot be any justification for any act of terrorism, whatsoever’,” she said at the First Reading of the Draft Resolution on 8th Review of the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy (GCTS).

Underlining that there cannot be good or bad terrorists, Kamboj said such an approach “will only take us back to the pre-9/11 era of labelling terrorists as ‘Your Terrorists’ and ‘My Terrorists’ and erase the collective gains the international community has made over the last two decades.

“Moreover, some of the terminologies such as right or right-wing extremism, or far right or far left extremism opens the gate for misuse of these terms by vested interests. We, therefore, need to be wary of providing a variety of classifications, which may militate against the concept of democracy itself,” she said.

India also asserted that states that provide shelter to terrorists should be called out and held accountable for their deeds, a veiled reference to Pakistan. The UN Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy is a “unique global instrument” to enhance national, regional and international efforts to counter-terrorism. Through its adoption by consensus in 2006, all UN member states agreed for the first time to a common strategic and operational approach to fighting terrorism.

“The Strategy does not only send a clear message that terrorism is unacceptable in all its forms and manifestations but it also resolves to take practical steps, individually and collectively, to prevent and combat terrorism,” according to the UN Office of Counter-Terrorism.

The UN General Assembly reviews the Global Counter-Terrorism Strategy every two years, “making it a living document attuned to Member States’ counter-terrorism priorities”.

Kamboj stressed that it is important to protect the secular nature of the strategy. She said India strongly condemns all kinds of terrorist attacks irrespective of religion, belief, culture, race or ethnicity.

“We strongly condemn terrorist attacks motivated by Islamophobia, Christianphobia, Anti-Semitism, Anti-Sikh, Anti-Buddhist, Anti-Hindu prejudices,” she said.

She noted that the 7th Review of the strategy took into account attacks motivated by Islamophobia, Christianphobia and anti-Semitism only while failing to address the rest.

“A more sagacious approach would be to keep this reference broad, abandoning thereby a list-based approach in the current Review,” she said.

Source: Daily Excelsior

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