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Indian defence minister warns summit of terror’s threat

Manohar Parrikar raises concerns over use of high-end technology by terror outfits

Gulf News

New Delhi: Calling for strong action by Asian countries against terrorism, India on Monday urged the early adoption of a global convention by the United Nations (UN) to effectively combat the menace.

Speaking at the 19th Asian Security Conference being held here at the Institute of Defence and Studies and Analyses, Defence Minister Manohar Parrikar described terrorism as the “most pervasive and serious threat to international security.”

“Terrorism remains the most pervasive and serious challenge to global security. While the threat is transnational, response does not appear to be coordinated even though there is a broad consensus on what constitutes an act of terror,” he said.

Calling for early adoption of the India-backed Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) by the UN, Parrikar said there must be action against entities which fund terror groups, propagate their ideologies and provide safe havens to terror groups.

The defence minister said India and Afghanistan have been victims of a proxy war for a long time.

“Afghanistan and India have been victims of this proxy war for decades now. Developing a coordinated global response is of the highest priority. There is definitely a need for developing an Asian approach to push the global fight against terror networks,” he stated.

Parrikar also raised concerns over the use of high-end technology by terror outfits to inflict damage.

“We live in a time of global uncertainty. Terrorists are using high tech equipment. Tackling terror finance and their use of social media are especially worrying,” he said.

Quoting a UN report, Parrikar said Daesh-affiliated groups carried out attacks in 29 countries in 2016 which is almost double in comparison to 2014.

“The arc of terror is expanding and only four groups are responsible for 75 per cent of all terror activities. They are Boko Haram, Taliban, ISIS (Daesh) and Lashkar-e-Toiba. As many as 60 million people have been impacted by conflict and violence. There is a need to combat complicated webs of terror financing. A holistic approach is needed to combat terror effectively,” he said.

He emphasised that seven per cent of all terror attacks in Asia are encountered by India.

“India wants terror camps closed. Asia has been victim of some of the most dreaded terrorist networks and a strong regional push from Asia will exert more pressure on rest of the world to adapt a cohesive framework to combat terror,” the Defence Minister averred.

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