UN needs to revive its energy to play greater role in maintaining international peace, security: India at UNGA

India has urged the United Nations to revive its energy to play a greater role in maintaining international peace and security to counter terrorism.

Addressing the Sixth Committee of the 75th session of the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA) on ‘Measures to Eliminate International Terrorism’, Yedla Umasankar, First Secretary/Legal adviser in India’s Permanent Mission to the UN, said that the UN needs to coordinate with agencies like Financial Action Task Force (FATF) to counter terrorism.

“Normative efforts at the United Nations need to be coordinated through collaboration with other fora like Financial Action Task Force (FATF) which is playing a significant role in setting global standards for preventing and combating money laundering and terrorist financing,”

He asserted, “It’s high time the United Nations revive its energy to play an even greater role in the maintenance of international peace and security.”

The First Secretary said that in the fight against terrorism, the focus should not be only “to eliminate terrorists and disrupt terror organisations/networks” but also to “identify/hold accountable and take strong measures against States that encourage, support and finance terrorism, provide sanctuary to terrorists and terror groups.”

He appealed to the UN and its member states to consider the rights of victims of terrorism and obligation of states towards them under international law.

“The UN and its member states should also consider the rights of victims of terrorism and the obligation of States towards the victims of terrorism under international law. It is important to note that the vast majority of victims of terrorism are often women and children. It is high time for us to try and strengthen efforts to achieve the objective of putting in place a global legal framework in the form of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism to counter a global scourge. This will provide a legal basis for the global fight against terrorism as all member states will have a multilateral platform to counter terrorism,” Umasankar told the UN.

He further stressed that linkages between terrorists and their supporters must be exposed and destroyed.

“We need an international mechanism to ensure accountability and justice, enhanced dialogue, and broaden understanding amongst the Member States. While the threat emanating from international terrorism is looming large, the inability of the United Nations to agree on a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism remains one of the most glaring shortcomings in the international legislative framework which could have boosted enforcement efforts to destroy safe havens of terrorists, their financial flows and their support networks,” he said.

At the UNGA, India also highlighted the importance and need for early finalisation and conclusion of the Draft CCIT (Comprehensive convention against international terrorism), which will reflect the country’s commitment to cooperate in combating terrorism. “We all have to realise the gravity and move forward for adopting the draft text of CCIT, which is a balanced one and has emerged after long discussions,” the First Secretary said.

Umasankar pointed out that India strongly supports GA Resolution 74/194 of December 18, 2019, in which para 25 recommends to Sixth Committee to establish the “Working Group with a view to finalise the process on the Draft Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism”.

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