Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar listed as global terrorist by UN after China lifts technical hold

While China lifted its technical hold on Masood Azhar’s listing as a global terrorist, Pakistan appeared to have reconciled to the latest development and did not object to it any longer.

New Delhi,  May 1:

In a major diplomatic victory for India, Jaish-e-Mohammed founder Masood Azhar was finally declared a global terrorist by the UN Security Council on Wednesday after China lifted its technical hold.

India’s Ambassador to the UN Syed Akbaruddin hailed the UN’s decision in a tweet.

Hours before the UN’s decision, Pakistan appeared to have reconciled to the development.

Government sources in Islamabad said Pakistan did not object to the terror tag for Masood Azhar any longer.

The global terrorist tag will subject Azhar to an assets freeze, travel ban and an arms embargo.

China removed its hold on the proposal, which was moved by France, UK and the US in the Security Council’s 1267 Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee in February just days after the deadly Pulwama terror attack carried out by the Pakistan-based terror outfit JeM.

Union finance minister Arun Jaitley said the decision was a high point for Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s foreign policy.

On Tuesday, Beijing had said that the vexed issue of designating the Pakistan-based Azhar as a global terrorist by the U.N. will be “properly resolved”.

Late April, India’s foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale held talks in Beijing with top Chinese officials, including foreign minister Wang Yi, on key issues including the listing of the JeM chief.

In March, China had put a hold on the proposal to blacklist Azhar after France moved a resolution following the February 14 Pulwama suicide bombing that killed 40 CRPF troopers. Beijing had said it needed more time to “study” the matter but added that it was “sincere” about building better ties with India.

It was the fourth time China had blocked such a move.

In the run up to Azhar’s listing as a global terrorist, China and the U.S. had sparred with each other over the methodology after Washington said it would use “all available resources” to blacklist the JeM founder.

In the beginning of April, China had reiterated that it was “working hard” to resolve the matter of designating Azhar, as a global terrorist and strongly criticised Washington’s statement about using “all available resources” to do so as counterproductive.

Azhar was released by India in exchange of passengers of the hijacked Indian Airlines plane IC-814 in 1999 and has since directed several attacks by the Jaish-e-Mohammad including an audacious assault on the Parliament in 2001 in coordination with another terror outfit Lashar-e-Toiba.

Courtesy: Hindustan Times

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