The heinous terror attack on a convoy of CRPF Jawans on that fateful afternoon of February 14, 2019 at Pulwama brought back painful memories of the carnage caused by terrorists across the world. It also reminded global leaders that it is in their respective national interests that they stand united in their resolve to vanquish terrorist outfits. As condolences poured in from across the globe, every message brought with it, unequivocal intent to stand with India in its fight against terrorism and terrorists.
Even one week later, it was heartening to see Prime Minister Narendra Modi continue to echo the sentiment of anguish and pain of the common citizens of India. This also sent out a strong message to global leaders. Through repeated mentions of the attack on various forums, along with prompt and relevant diplomatic decisions including withdrawal of the Most Favored Nation status, increase in customs duty on goods imported from Pakistan to 200%, and the announcement to divert water from eastern rivers to Jammu and Kashmir and Punjab, India has made it clear to the world that it would not take such incidents lying down. This is also to build pressure on global leaders while exhorting them to take a stand on terrorism and openly name and shame those responsible for such incidents.
On February 21, 2019, the United Nations Security Council issued a statement which condemned the attack in the strongest terms.
- The statement said, “The Members of the Security Council condemned in the strongest terms the heinous and cowardly suicide bombing in Jammu and Kashmir, which resulted in over 40 Indian paramilitary forces dead and dozens wounded on February 14,2019, for which Jaish e Mohammed has claimed responsibility”.
- The statement extended deepest sympathy and condolences to families of victims as well as to the Indians and the Government of India. It wished a speedy and full recovery to those who were injured.
- Members of the Security Council reaffirmed that terrorism in all forms and manifestations constitutes one of the most serious threats to international peace and security.
- It must be noted that while the statement makes no mention of Pakistan, it does go on to say that the members of the Security Council underline the need to hold the perpetrators, organizers, financiers, and sponsors of these reprehensible acts of terrorism accountable, and bring them to justice.
This statement is significant for two main reasons.
One, it holds the perpetrators, organizers, financiers, and sponsors of terrorism directly accountable, while also indirectly mentioning Pakistan.
Two, even though China enjoys veto power in the Security Council, the statement mentions Jaish e Mohammed as the main actor. So, China agreed to and signed on a statement that had clearly named JeM.
Notably, in 2016 also when India had sought declaration of Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar as UN-designated terrorist, it was reported that China was the only country among the 15-member UN Security Council (UNSC) to oppose the move.
The statement by Security Council will strengthen India’s position against terrorism and ensure there is a global consensus against terror outfits, terrorists and their sympathizers. The shift in China’s position is another addition to PM Modi’s foreign policy successes.