Tags Posts tagged with "terrorism"

terrorism

269
The United Nations will not work effectively if it is used merely as forum for destructive propaganda.

Tennyson in ‘Locksley Hall’ presented his vision of the world where “war-drum throbb’d no longer, and the battle flags were furled.” Mudaliar, the Dewan of Mysore speaking on behalf of undivided India had once said, the great reality, which all religions teach is the dignity of the common man.

However, all those words rang hollow, when the Indian and Pakistani delegations faced each other in the U.N. Reality was rare, as even the photograph brandished by Pakistan’s Maleeha Lodhi as being from Jammu and Kashmir was actually from Gaza. In any case, the India-Pakistan war of words was outdone by the U.S. and North Korea.

However UN’s 72nd General Assembly was made one of its most disappointing sessions because of its ineffectiveness on each of the issues pointed out by Secretary General António Guterres in his speech on September 19.

According to him seven biggest threats that face the world today are:

  • Nuclear peril.
  • Terrorism.
  • Unresolved conflicts and violations of international humanitarian law.
  • Growing inequality.
  • Climate change.
  • Cyber warfare and misuse of artificial intelligence.
  • Refugees.

UN’s actions in the case of North Korea just amounted to some more sanctions against it. The truth about sanctions is that they do not work on rogue states but they only isolate their populations from the world, which works in favour of regime’s stranglehold on its people.

On the basis of satellite pictures and the accounts of eyewitnesses, the UN Human Rights chief called military action in post-democracy Myanmar,  a “textbook case of ethnic cleansing”, as close to half a million Rohingya fled from Rakhine villages that were then burnt down and landmines were laid along the border with Bangladesh to prevent their return.

Given that Hafiz Saeed and his associates now plan to stand for public office in Pakistan and while Zakiur Rehman Lakhvi received bail despite financial sanctions, more action is expected from U.N.

Mr. Guterres pointed out on the issue of inequalities that, “eight men represent as much of the world’s wealth as half of all humanity”

UN’s first Secretary General, Trygve Lie, ran an equally divided forum and faced the same challenges before finally resigning from his post in 1952. His last words were, “The United Nations will not work effectively if it is used merely as forum for destructive propaganda. Neither will it work if it is used only as a convenience when national interests are directly involved, and regarded with indifference, or bypassed or opposed, when the general world interest is paramount.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

382
Surveys conducted by various Afghan and foreign agencies show that the Afghan people ranked Indian assistance as the most suitable because of the positive role India has played in the development programme of Afghanistan.

Afghanistan and defence ties with U.S. are expected to be the prime issues during James Mattis’s visit to India next week. Mr. Trump’s policy includes more pressure on Pakistan, no early U.S. withdrawal from Afghanistan, great military action on counter-terrorism and a greater role for India in sync with the U.S.

On January 4, 1950, India signed a Treaty of Friendship with Afghanistan which permitted opening of consulates in each other’s country. Surveys conducted by various Afghan and foreign agencies show that the Afghan people ranked Indian assistance as the most suitable because of the positive role India has played in the development programme of Afghanistan. The Afghans also appreciate the fact that India has never interfered in their internal affairs till date.

The energy basket of Asia needs to be exploited for the benefit of Afghanistan and the surrounding region. The Turkmenistan-Afghanistan-Pakistan-India pipeline is one such example.

It is also necessary to redouble counter-narcotics efforts as Afghanistan remains the world’s largest producer of opium, accounting for 90% of the world’s supply.

A Stable Afghanistan requires involvement of the Central Asian Republics, Russia and Iran, which border Afghanistan. It is important for India to coordinate its efforts with those to ensure success.

 

1465

The 12th century mosque, the Grand al-Nuri in Mosul, from where Abu Bakr al-Baghdadi proclaimed himself the ‘Caliph’ of the world’s Muslims was destroyed by IS as they retreated from the Iraqi troops. Shortly after that, Iraqi Prime Minister Haider al-Abadi formally announced the liberation of Mosul.

The Iraqi army with help from Iran-trained militias, the Kurdish Peshmerga and the U.S. Air Force liberated small cities first, such as Ramadi and Fallujah, before moving towards Mosul in October 2016.

Recently IS has faced many setbacks like:

  • Losing more than half of the territories it once held.
  • Finding it harder to recruit new jihadists under strain of battlefield losses.
  • Its leader Baghdadi being either dead or on the run.

But these setbacks do not mean that the IS has been defeated, because of many reasons:

  • It still controls various strategic territories in Iraq. Hawijah, Tal Afar, Salahuddin province and pockets in Anbar and Diyala. In Syria, it still controls Raqqa, and Deir Ezzor.
  • There’s no guarantee that the IS won’t come back to the cities it lost.

In Syria, the battle against the IS, is more complicated than that in Iraq. In Iraq at least there is a consensus of America, the Kurds and Iran and Shia militias about what the legitimate force is against the IS i.e. the Iraqi government. But in Syria, Raqqa is being attacked by SDF and the government troops both. Russia is backing the regime, while the U.S. is supporting the SDF. Turkey, another country that’s involved by its proxies in the war, is wary of the SDF. So even if Raqqa is liberated someday, it will be difficult to reach on a peaceful decision on who will eventually run the city.

IS which started as an insurgency, has transformed itself into a proto-state. Now the proto-state is under attack, but it can retreat to insurgency (uprising/revolt) for its continued survival.

It has changed its strategy very recently. Instead of expanding its territories now, it has become defensive and released a wave of terror attacks in various parts of the world.

IS has established franchises in other countries. Boko Haram, Africa’s most dreaded terror outfit, has declared loyalty to the IS. In eastern Afghanistan, the Islamic State of Khorasa is a branch of the IS, which is controlling the group’s operations in South Asia. In Philippines, armed jihadist groups have declared their loyalty to the IS and are fighting the government forces also.

 

190

US Defence bill has approved $900 million (Rs 6,121 Crore) as economic assistance to Pakistan to deal with terrorism especially the Afghan guerrilla insurgent group  Haqqani network.

Haqqani network succeeded in pushing back the Soviet invaders under the leadership of Jalalludin Haqqani (now Sirajuddin Haqqani) and is now engaged in securing the withdrawal of US and coalition forces mostly of NATO nations  from Afghanistan.

haqqani-1-04-12-2016

Basically US began war against terrorism in Afghanistan against Al-Qaeda after the 9/11 terror attack. But Al-Qaeda and Haqqani Network are intertwined in Afghanistan-Pakistan region and are committed to bringing about sharia law in Afghanistan. Al Qaeda which looks after global terror operations  and Haqqani which is mainly responsible for regional terror activities have allies in Taliban, Tehrik-e- Taliban Pakistan, Tehrik-e-Nafaz-e-Shariat-e-Mohammadi.

The US House of representatives passed a consensus $900 Million assistance to Pakistan out of which $450 Million will be reimbursed upon certificate from Pentagon about Islamabad’s actions against terrorism, mainly the Haqqani network.

US policy has consistently been to deal terrorism in Afghanistan through Pakistan because it had some years back witnessed a savage  attack on Pakistan army public school in which 140 students were killed  and also attacks on military academy.

Pakistan has been carrying out military operations named Zarb-e-Azb against foreign or local militant groups across the Durrand Line bordering Pakistan and Afghanistan. These two countries have very intricate relationship calling this as brotherly bonding as Ghani and Pakistan PM Nawaz Sharif share friendly ties.

In a congratulatory phone call to US President-elect Donald Trump, Afghan President Ashraf Ghani had reiterated dedication of Afghan security forces in defending Afghan territorial integrity  and expressed admiration for the sacrifices of US and Nato troops. Both Trump and Ghani emphasized their joint commitment to fight terrorism.

Trump’s phone call to Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif assuring him of working closely with Pakistan shows his approach in Asia. Donald has chosen Michael Flynn as his national security advisor, who was under investigation in 2010 for sharing sensitive intelligence data with Pakistan about Haqqani network.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst

173

Two points on which the Heart of Asia Conference revolves are : cross border terrorism in India by Pakistan and the participation of Sartaj Aziz, the Pakistan Prime Minister’s advisor on foreign affairs, secondly, the Islamic State attacks in Afghanistan when 60% of the country is under Taliban. 

As India hosts the Heart of Asia Conference in Amritsar on December, senior officials from 14 countries including China and Pakistan will participate. In this meet, Prime Minister Narendra Modi will hold one-to-one discussion with Afghan President Ashraf Ghani where there is an apparent nexus between the Islamic State and Taliban and the latter controls 60% of Afghanistan. India has completed the delivery of the final Mi-24 gunship to the Afghan Air Force (AAF) to arm the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces (ANDSF) with more lethal weaponry. 

Adviser Aziz announced that he would participate in the conference as Pakistan supports any initiative aimed at bringing peace and stability in Afghanistan and that it would be a “good opportunity” to “defuse the tension” between the two neighbors. 

In spite of the fact that northern Afghanistan has strong presence of ISIS jihadists, President Ashraf Ghani also traveled  to the Caspian Sea and gave an oblique hint of having cultural and ethnic  relations with the Muslim population of Caucasus countries which are controlled by Russian minority population. Russia will also watch their interests in a prominent way.

The Afghan leadership therefore harbors ambitions about Caucasus as well as is showing itself to tackle ISIS-Taliban nexus. 

Afghan officials have decided to ask China to play a lead role in the region for development and infrastructure purposes while proposing India to play a developmental role in the education sector. 

Further elaborating his government’s stance, Ambassador Shaida Mohammad Abdali said, “Afghanistan is no longer a landlocked country in the practical sense of the term. In recent months, we have entered into several connectivity projects including Chabahar (that connects India with Kabul via Iran) and initiatives that will link our nation with Central Asia and Black Sea. 

Ghani after assuming power in Afghanistan made clear his vision of including Caucasus region of Russia in the purview of Afghanistan connectivity and thus proximity to European markets. Meanwhile, Ghani appealed to the US to re-examine the 2016 timetable for withdrawing the remaining US led coalition troops from Afghanistan. But US-President elect Donald Trump policy on Afghanistan will be outlined after his inauguration in January 2017 with a hint that countries will have to foot their bills themselves for their security. 

While accusing Pakistan of interfering in Afghanistan, Abdali said that Heart of Asia governments had agreed that implementation of non-interference in Afghanistan requires “resolutely combating  and eliminating terrorism and dismantling terror infrastructure and acknowledging that terrorism is a threat to international peace and security.” 

As India is witnessing terror attacks from Pakistan it also desires examination of terror activities and infrastructure from Pakistan and Sartaj Aziz will have to respond to India’s concerns in this regard.

This is one of the crucial meeting where India and Pakistan are participating as in August 25, 2014 the Indo-Pak Foreign Secretary level talks were called off after High Commissioner Abdul Basit held meetings with Kashmiri Separatists leaders where after terror attacks in India like in Udampur, Gurdaspur, Pathankot, Uri were witnessed.

Article Courtesy : Arti Bali, Senior Journalist & Analyst