BIMSTEC Declaration endorses India’s stand; makes veiled attack on Pakistan
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BIMSTEC Declaration endorses India’s stand; makes veiled attack on Pakistan

Kathmandu, Aug 31: The Kathmandu Declaration adopted at the end of the fourth BIMSTEC Summit here on Friday endorsed India's known stand on terror menace and said categorically that fight against terror should also identify and hold accountable States and non-State entities that encourage, support or finance terrorism.

The Declaration adopted by the member nation heads and government heads of Bangladesh, India, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Thailand, Bhutan, and Nepal said that: "....the fight against terrorism should target not only terrorists, terror organizations and networks but also identify and hold accountable States and non-State entities that encourage, support or finance terrorism, provide sanctuaries to terrorists and terror groups and falsely extol their virtues". It deplored terrorist attacks in all parts of the world, including in BIMSTEC countries and strongly condemn terrorism in all its forms and manifestations "wherever and by whomsoever".

It also said there can be "no justification whatsoever for any act of terrorism". The observations on terror front are largely seen as a veiled attack on Pakistan. Prime Minister Narendra Modi in his speech at the plenary session on Thursday gave a major push to make the seven-member BIMSTEC a more purposeful regional grouping and sought a bigger role for it vis-a-vis transnational crime, terrorism and drug trafficking.

"None of us among the member nations can say we have not faced terrorism and terror-related networks. There are issues of drug trafficking and transnational crimes. We are ready to host a frame-work conference on drug menace," the Prime Minister has said.

The Kathmandu Declaration also reiterated strong commitment to combat terrorism and call upon all countries to devise a comprehensive approach in this regard which should include preventing financing of terrorists and terrorist actions from territories under their control, blocking recruitment and cross-border movement of terrorists, countering radicalization, countering misuse of internet for purposes of terrorism and dismantling terrorist safe havens. (UNI)