Still discussing sanctions on Azhar, says China

Still discussing sanctions on Azhar, says China
China on Friday said it was still discussing with India the contentious issue of imposing United Nations sanctions on Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar and such discussions took time.

“Discussions are going on. Foreign Secretary (of India) was in Beijing two days ago. The discussions were very good and covered everything,” China’s ambassador to India Luo Zhaohui said when asked about differences between New Delhi and Beijing over bringing the leader of the terror outfit under UN sanctions.

He was referring to Foreign Secretary S Jaishankar’s visit to Beijing earlier this week to launch the India-China strategic dialogue with the communist country's Executive Vice Foreign Minister Zhang Yesui.

“Just wait (for the outcome of the discussions). China's support to India and every country on matters related to terrorism will always be there. Some discussions are going on. It takes time,” Luo told journalists at the inauguration of the Chinese visa application centre at Shivaji Stadium Metro station in Delhi.

New Delhi has been nudging Beijing to shed its policy of shielding terrorists based in Pakistan from United Nations sanctions. The issue was discussed by Jaishankar and Zhang at the launch of the Strategic Dialogue in Beijing recently.

Beijing reiterated that lack of “solid evidence” prevented it from supporting the moves at the UN to designate the JeM chief as an international terrorist and to impose sanctions on him. New Delhi argued that the extent of Azhar's actions were “well documented” and the “burden of proving it” was not on India.

The US has moved a fresh proposal at the UN panel established under the Security Council’s resolutions 1267, 1989 and 2253, seeking sanctions on Azhar. The US proposal was co-sponsored by two other permanent member of the Security Council – the UK and France.

The proposal was put forward in coordination with India. Russia, which is also a UNSC permanent member, supported the move and so did 10 other non-permanent members of the council.

China, however, was the only UNSC permanent member which remained opposed to the proposal to bring the JeM chief under UN-mandated international sanctions. China had last year blocked a similar move by India to designate Azhar as a terrorist leader by the UN and impose UN sanctions on him.

“China is against any form of terrorist activity and organisation. So, on this matter, China will always be in same line with the international community and take concrete measures,” said ambassador Lou.

He said China and India were also discussing the contentious issue of Beijing's opposition to New Delhi's proposed entry into the Nuclear Suppliers Group.
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