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India seeks firm commitment to fight 'scourge of terrorism'

world Updated: Oct 09, 2009 13:37 IST

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Calling terrorism "the scourge of our times", India has asked the global community to make a firm commitment to fight terrorism by adopting a comprehensive convention on international terrorism.

"Terrorism is the scourge of our times. It undermines peace, democracy and freedom, endangering the international community and humankind as a whole," said Hardeep Singh Puri, permanent representative of India to the UN, during a panel meeting Thursday.

Noting that The Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) has been under negotiations for years at the UN, he said: "It is time for the global community to conclude the negotiations and make a firm commitment by adopting the Convention."

India has been a victim of terrorism for decades, Puri said while recalling the "barbaric terrorist attack on the innocent people of Mumbai on November 26, 2008 (that) reminded us of the daily and malignant menace that terrorism poses to all countries".

Indian diplomatic missions are also being targeted, he said, citing the July 7, 2008 and October 8 attacks on the Indian embassy in Kabul.

Noting that countless innocent lives had been lost to heinous terrorist attacks, Puri said: "It is imperative that our resolve against perpetrators of such attacks now be manifested in a strong and resolute manner."

The Indian envoy also expressed profound concern on the deep-rooted nexus between drug mafias, arms dealers, and money launderers for financing terrorism.

"This is a grave, dangerous and destructive nexus," Puri said, stressing the "need to create as well as reinforce bilateral, regional and international cooperation to develop strategies to combat the menace of this nexus".

India supported the efforts of the UN in providing necessary assistance to countries to put in place appropriate counter-terrorism legislation, he said.

"More efforts are also needed at national, regional and international level to implement practical measures on the ground to tackle this."

Noting that "international peace and security is the very bedrock of every nation", he said: "India remains committed to working bilaterally and through regional and international cooperation towards a world free of transnational organised crime, illicit drugs, money laundering, illegal arms transactions and last but not the least, terrorism."