New Delhi: In a big development, France has come out in support of India and announced that it will move a proposal at the United Nations this week to impose a ban on Maulana Masood Azhar, chief of the Jaish-e-Muhammed (JeM) terror group. It may be noted that the ghastly terror attack on a CRPF convoy in Pulwama in Jammu and Kashmir last week, in which 40 paramilitary personnel were martyred, was carried out by the JeM. The JeM is already in the UN list of banned terror groups.
The French government will be moving a proposal at the UN seeking a ban on Masood Azhar for the second time. Earlier in 2017, France, along with the United Kingdom, had supported a US proposal at the UN’s Sanctions Committee 1267 to impose a ban on the chief of the Pakistan-based terror outfit. However, the ban could not materialise as China, Pakistan’s all-weather ally, had blocked the proposal.
“At the UN, France will lead a proposal to put Masood Azhar on the terrorist list… It will happen in a couple of days,” news agency PTI quoted a senior French source as saying.
The report said a discussion on the matter was earlier this morning held between Philippe Etienne, Diplomatic Advisor to the French President, and India’s National Security Advisor Ajit Doval. The French official, who telephoned Doval, stressed that India and France should coordinate their diplomatic efforts.
While condemning the Pulwama terror attack, China had refused to change its stand on Masood Azhar and support the proposal to impose a UN ban on him.
“As for the issue of listing, I could tell you that the 1267 Committee of Security Council has a clear stipulation on the listing and procedure of the terrorist organisations. JeM has been included in the Security Council terrorism sanctions list. China will continue to handle the relevant sanctions issue in a constructive and responsible manner,” a Chinese official said, apparently referring to India’s appeal to all UNSC members to designate the JeM chief as a global terrorist.