BRICS declaration naming Pakistan-based terror groups Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohamed (JeM) not only has been widely welcomed but seen as a victory for countries concerned about terrorism in the region. For India no doubt the naming of these terror groups was a major diplomatic breakthrough in Xiaman as Beijing had stalled all such attempts by both Russia and India during last BRICS summit in Goa. After the naming of Jaish in the BRICS declaration, which is an accused in both Pathankot and Uri terror attacks of 2016, the next logical step for India should be get its chief Maulana Masood Azhar proscribed by the UN. China has continued to block all attempts to include Azhar in the UNSC sanctions list despite the fact that the organisation he continues to helm is blacklisted by the same Security Council. India now is hoping that Moscow will be of help to India in convincing Beijing to give up its opposition to the ban on Azhar too.Moscow is of the view that on the limited issue of Azhar, China may in the near future come round to India’s view that a ban on Azhar will indeed be a positive step in the fight against terrorism. Beijing knows it has limited bargaining power with Azhar. The 43-page ‘Xiamen Declaration’, adopted at the end of the five-nation BRICS plenary, expressed “concern” over the security situation in the region and the violence caused by the Taliban, ISIS, al-Qaeda and its affiliates including Eastern Turkistan Islamic Movement, Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan, the Haqqani network, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e- Mohammad, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan (TTP) and Hizb ut-Tahrir. In the last two years, China has stonewalled efforts by India and then later by the US, the UK and France to declare Azhar as a terrorist, stating that there is no consensus on the issue. India should work towards a logical step to get JeM chief Maulana Masod Azhar proscribed by the UN rather bask in the glory of democratic victory. Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj had earlier this year publicly appealed to Russia to convince China to support India’s NSG membership bid but Moscow is not hopeful of a breakthrough anytime soon.
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