New Delhi, Dec 11: India, Russia and China on Monday jointly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations while calling for effective implementation of existing international commitments to counter terrorism following the 15th Russia-India-China Foreign Ministerial Meeting here.
“Our discussions today were focused on four broad cluster of areas, namely, economic and developmental issues, fight against terrorism, global and multilateral issues, and regional issues,” External Affairs Sushma Swaraj said in joint address to the media along with her Russian and Chinese counterparts, Sergey Lavrov and Wang Yi respectively, after the meeting.
“While discussing terrorism, I put across my view that significant rise in acts of terrorism by terrorist organisations like Taliban, Daesh (Islamic State), Al Qaeda, and LeT (Lashkar-e-Taiba) directly undermine international peace and security and endanger ongoing efforts to strengthen the global economy and ensure sustainable growth and development,” Sushma Swaraj said.
Stating that India strongly recommends a comprehensive policy for dealing with global terrorism, she said: “The policy should include dealing with extremism, countering religious fanaticism, preventing recruitment of terrorists, disrupting terrorist movements, stopping all sources for financing of terrorism, stopping flow of FTFs (foreign terrorist fighters), dismantling terrorist infrastructure, and countering terrorist propaganda through the internet, but we should not limit ourselves to these only.”
A joint statement issued following the meeting said that the three sides condemned “terrorism in all its forms and manifestations including the recent heinous terrorist attacks around the world and reaffirm our determination to prevent and counter terrorism in all its forms and manifestations”.
“We reaffirm that all acts of terrorism are criminal and unjustifiable irrespective of their motivations, committed wherever and by whomsoever. We call for greater unity, stronger international partnership and concerted actions by the international community in addressing the menace of terrorism in accordance with international law and the UN Charter, including the principles of sovereign equality of states and non-interference in their internal affairs,” the statement said.
“We emphasize the need for a comprehensive approach in combating terrorism, and in this context resolve to step up cooperation to prevent and counter terrorism and radicalization, combat the spread of terrorist ideology and propaganda, stop sources of terrorist financing, prevent travelling of and the supply of arms to terrorists, dismantle terrorist infrastructure, disrupt recruitment and the flow of foreign terrorist fighters and prevent misuse of Information and Communication Technologies (ICTs) for terrorist purposes.”
Without naming Pakistan, the three countries underlined the primary and leading role and responsibility of states in preventing and countering terrorism and extremism and reiterated that all states should take adequate measures to prevent terrorist activities from their territory.
“We stress that those committing, organising, inciting or supporting terrorist acts must be held accountable and brought to justice in accordance with the obligations under international law, including the principle of ‘extradite or prosecute’ as well as the applicable domestic legislations,” the statement said.
In her address to the media, Sushma Swaraj referred to the rise of Indian in the World Bank Ease of Doing Business report from 142nd position in 2014 to 100th this year and said: “I have invited China and Russia for a more intensive trade and economic partnership so that they can take advantage of the economic opportunities available here.”
Stating that the UN’s Sustainable Developmental Goals (SDGs) mirror India’s own vision of development, Sushma Swaraj said that Indian initiatives such as Smart Cities, Make in India, Beti Bachao Beti Padhao, Swachh Bharat, Jan Dhan Yojana, Digital India, Skill India, and Start-up India closely related to several targets under the SDGs.
“To combat climate change, I argued that we should ensure a fair implementation of the Paris Agreement based on the principles laid down in the Convention (UNFCCC), especially equity and Common but Differentiated Responsibility,” she stated.
Prior to the trilateral meeting, Sushma Swaraj held separate bilateral meetings with Wang and Lavrov.
“Foreign Minister Wang Yi and I agreed that we should further strengthen our mutual trust to develop a better understanding between the two parties,” Sushma Swaraj.
“And it will be better to meet again and without agenda, which will help us to expand our mutual understanding.”
Wang’s is the first high-level visit from China after Indian and Chinese troops were in a tense face-off earlier this year at Doklam.
Monday’s meeting comes amidst media reports of Chinese troops establishing a permanent presence near Doklam on the India-China-Bhutan international trijunction.
Regarding her meeting with Lavrov, Sushma Swaraj said that that boht sides “reviewed our bilateral relations and both of us were satisfied that this is the 70th year of establishing diplomatic relations between us and more than 100 programmes were organised in the two countries to commemorate the 70th anniversary”.
“It is well-known that relations between India and Russia are very close and friendly,” she said.