India issues DEMARCHE to China for continuously blocking UN ban on PAK Jaish e Mohammed Terrorist Masood Azhar


India has issued a demarche (diplomatic missive) to China regarding itscontinued block on a UN ban on Jaish-e-Muhammed+ leader Masood Azhar. The MEA confirmed on Thursday demarches had been served to the Chinese embassy in New Delhi and in the foreign office in Beijing by the Indian embassy.

China blocked once again, a joint move by the US, UK and France+ to proscribe Masood Azhar in the UNSC 1267 committee. The move, made on January 19, saw 14 members out of 15 agreeing to the ban, but China's block prevented it from happening. Responding to the Chinese foreign ministry statement that there was "no consensus", MEA spokesperson Vikas Swarup told journalists, "if there is a change in the Chinese position, there will be consensus as well ..."

He also refuted the Chinese stand that India and Pakistan should talk to each other on the issue. "It is our understanding that this was a classic counterterrorism proposal meant to proscribe a dreaded terrorist leader Masood Azhar whose organisation the Jaish-e-Muhammed has already been proscribed by the UN 1267 Committee. We don't view this as a bilateral matter between India and Pakistan but as an issue of global counter terrorism. We hope that eventually China will also come around to accepting this view."

Meanwhile, India will be sending a delegation led by Gopal Baglay in charge of the Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran desk in MEA, to a Russia-sponsored conference on Afghanistan in Moscow on February 15.

"We are happy to accept the invitation of Russia for consultations to be held in Moscow in Afghanistan on February 15. We look forward to the valuable opportunity to discuss with other regional countries all aspects of the situation in Afghanistan," Swarup said.

The Russian move comes after apprehensions that Moscow was tilting towards the Pakistan line+ that the world had to make peace with the Taliban in Afghanistan to bring stability, making ISIS/Daesh as the real villains in the country. This has beencontradicted by Afghan government+ , but the argument has found takers both in China and Russia, whose senior official even supported this at several forums, drawing India's ire.

India also scotched speculation that official dialogue between India and Pakistan could resume after elections in five states, which was a speculation expressed by a Pakistani minister.+

"It is not state elections in India but state terrorism by Pakistan which has stood in the way of a peaceful bilateral dialogue. It is high time Pakistan gets the diagnosis of the problem right. It should no remain in denial on the impact of cross border terrorism on the bilateral relationship. Both the problem and its solution are within Pakistan's reach," Swarup said.

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