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Balakot air strikes a demo of our intent, capability, says President Kovind

Masood Azhar was designated a global terrorist by the UN in May this year after China withdrew its long-standing block to the move

india Updated: Jun 20, 2019 14:02 IST
HT Correspondent
HT Correspondent
Hindustan Times, New Delhi
Ram Nath Kovind,Masood Azhar,Jaish-e-Mohammed
President Ram Nath Kovind addressed a joint session of Parliament in the presence of Vice President Venkaiah Naidu and Lok Sabha Speaker Om Birla, in New Delhi.(PTI)

The listing of Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar as a global terrorist in the United Nations is proof that the world stands with India on issue of terrorism, President Ram Nath Kovind said in his address to a joint session of Parliament on Thursday.

“Today the whole world stands with India on the issue of terrorism. Designation of Masood Azhar, responsible for dastardly terrorist attacks on our soil, as a global terrorist by United Nations, is a major testimony to this fact,” said President Kovind.

In his address, President Kovind said the people of India have given a “clear mandate” in the Lok Sabha elections to accelerate the country’s development journey that started in 2014 to build a New India. He said the Narendra Modi government is moving ahead to create a strong, secure and inclusive India.

President Kovind said the New India will be sensitive and also, economically prosperous but for this to happen, nation’s security is of utmost importance. “My Government accords top most priority to national security. Therefore, effective steps are being taken to tackle Terrorism and Naxalism,” he said.

“India has amply demonstrated both her intent and capabilities, first through surgical strikes and then through air strikes after the Pulwama attack at terrorist hideouts across the border. In future too, all possible steps will be taken to ensure our security,” he said.

Masood Azhar, the chief of Pakistan-based JeM, was designated a global terrorist by the UN in May this year after China withdrew its long-standing block to the move, marking a major diplomatic and political victory in the Indian government’s efforts to counter cross-border terrorism.

Also read: ‘Brief the boss’: The backstory of Masood Azhar’s global terror tag

Azhar was listed by the UN’s 1267 Sanctions Committee for his association with al-Qaeda and his role in financing, planning and facilitating terrorist acts by the Jaish. The terror tag meant that Pakistan is required to take three steps – freeze the funds and financial assets of Azhar, enforce a travel ban on him, and cut off his access to arms and related materials.

First Published: Jun 20, 2019 12:20 IST