IB Director asks SAARC nations to enforce sanctions against terrorist entities, individuals

NetIndian News Network

New Delhi, September 22, 2016

Intelligence Bureau (IB) Director Dineshwar Sharma today urged the SAARC nations to strictly enforce internationally mandated sanctions against terrorist entities and individuals.
In his opening remarks at the second Meeting of the High Level Group of Eminent Experts to strengthen the SAARC Anti-Terrorism Mechanism, Mr Sharma also called upon the eight member-States to ratify and enable various Conventions enacted by the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC).
These include the Convention on Suppression of Terrorism and Additional Protocols and the Mutual Assistance in Criminal Matters.
Referring to the terrorist attack on an army camp in Uri, Jammu & Kashmir, he said this incident was only one in a series of such dastardly acts during the last few decades. The planning, financing, training, arming and indoctrination on religious lines for such assaults owe their origins to sources beyond the borders of India, he added.
Stating that terrorism has emerged as a big challenge for the entire world, Mr Sharma said no country today was in a position to tackle this problem on its own. Close cooperation and sharing of real-time intelligence were, therefore, imperative for all to secure the countries and peoples, he added.
Mr Sharma said terrorist organisations use easily accessible technology to attack both soft and hard targets. Self-radicalisation over internet and social media, and spread of influence of Islamic State all over, including in India, has added new dimensions to the threat, he added.
He identified countering financing of terrorism as one of the most important tools to fight the terror menace. Similarly, cyberspace has become an important area for radicalisation and spread of jihadi materials.
Besides, the problem of fake currency feeds into supporting terrorism and could create economic destabilization in the region, he added.
The First Meeting on the SAARC Anti-Terrorism Mechanism in February 2012 had stressed upon the need for immediate operationalization of the newly created SAARC Terrorist Offences Monitoring Desk and SAARC Drug Offences Monitoring Desk at Colombo for creating database which could be used by all members.
However, not much progress seems to have taken place on this initiative, Mr Sharma said while calling upon the delegates to take up 'Terror Financing and Money Laundering' and 'Cyber Crime' as new agenda items.
Meeting of a High Level Group of Eminent Experts to strengthen the SAARC Anti-Terrorism Mechanism was recommended by the SAARC Ministerial Declaration on Cooperation in Combating Terrorism (adopted by the 31st Meeting of SAARC Council of Ministers in Colombo, February 2009).
India had hosted its first meeting in New Delhi from 9-10 February 2012. Hosting the meeting for the second time is in line with the high priority India attaches for regional cooperation in Anti-Terrorism activities and given that terrorism remains the single biggest threat to peace, stability and progress in the region and beyond.