Foreign Policy Watch: Cross-Border Terrorism

Jun, 23, 2018

Mongolia launches construction of first oil refinery with India aid


Mains Paper 2: IR | Bilateral, regional & global groupings & agreements involving India &/or affecting India’s interests

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: India-Mongolia cultural ties

Mains level: India-Mongolia Bilateral Relation and its importance.


India funded oil refinery in Mongolia

  1. Mongolia launched construction of its first oil refinery
  2. It is a long-awaited project that is funded by India and designed to end the country’s dependence on Russian fuel.
  3. The oil refinery, in southern Dornogovi province, will be capable of processing 1.5 million tonnes of crude oil per year

Benefits for Mongolia

  1. Mongolia’s new refinery, planned for completion in late 2022, will meet all of the nation’s demand for gasoline, diesel, aviation fuel and liquefied petroleum gas (LPG).
  2. Earlier it was solely dependent on Russia for petroleum, though it exported crude oil
  3. By establishing this strategically important oil refinery, the national economy will become independent from energy imports, and fuel and commodity prices will be stabilized
  4. The project is expected to boost Mongolia’s gross domestic product by 10 percent, it said.

Indian Credit: Slow but steady

  1. A Mongolian oil refinery has been discussed since 1997, but while several projects were approved, none have been completed.
  2. The refinery’s financing is part of a $1 billion credit line agreement between Mongolia and the Export-Import Bank of India, made during a 2015 visit by Prime Minister Modi.


India-Mongolia Bilateral relations

  1. Mongolia, a large landlocked country wedged between giants China and Russia, has a population of just 3 million. Almost half its people live as nomadic stock herders.
  2. Mongolia considers India a “third neighbor” as well as a “spiritual neighbor” (the late venerable Kushok Bakula Rinpoche, a Buddhist monk who is revered in Mongolia, was the Indian ambassador to Ulaanbaatar for 10 years).
  3. India shares historical relations with Mongolia in terms of culture from over 2700 years.
  4. Nomadic Elephant was the Counter-Terrorism joint military exercise conducted by India and Mongolia in 2016
Apr, 11, 2018

India-EU meeting in May to counter online radicalisation


Mains Paper 2: IR | Bilateral, regional & global groupings & agreements involving India &/or affecting India’s interests

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: European Union, National Investigation Agency

Mains level: National and International efforts to combat terrorism


Countering online radicalization

  1. Law enforcement agencies of India and European Union (EU) members are scheduled to meet in New Delhi in May to discuss ways of countering online radicalization
  2. India and the EU block would also be expanding the ambit of cooperation in tackling terrorists and terror groups

Need for this meeting

  1. Both India and EU are facing major challenges because of the online reach of radical organizations
  2. The objective of the meeting would be to draw a roadmap for neutralizing the impact of extremism
  3. The NIA (National Investigation Agency) would be in charge of the counter-radicalization meeting

Coopearting in curbing terrorism

  1. India and EU are also cooperating on ways to combat terrorism
  2. This includes listing area-specific and global terrorist groups and sharing with each other


European Union (EU)

  1. The European Union (EU) is a political and economic union of 28 member states that are located primarily in Europe
  2. The Maastricht Treaty established the European Union in 1993 and introduced European citizenship
  3. The EU has developed an internal single market through a standardized system of laws that apply in all member states
  4. EU policies aim to ensure the free movement of people, goods, services, and capital within the internal market, enact legislation in justice and home affairs, and maintain common policies on trade, agriculture, fisheries, and regional development
  5. Within the Schengen Area, passport controls have been abolished
  6. The EU traces its origins from the European Coal and Steel Community (ECSC) and the European Economic Community (EEC), established, respectively, by the 1951 Treaty of Paris and 1957 Treaty of Rome
Feb, 27, 2018

[op-ed snap] New dynamic in the north west


Mains Paper 2: IR | Important International institutions, agencies & fora, their structure, mandate

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: FATF, TAPI project

Mains level: India’s rising stature at international fora


Changing conditions in north-west

  1. Two developments last week pointed to the new directions in which the north-western Subcontinent could evolve
  2. One is the fresh international agreement to put Pakistan on notice with regard to financing terror groups
  3. The other is the ground-breaking ceremony for the construction of the trans-border natural gas pipeline in Afghanistan

FATF decision

  1. The decisions of the United Nations Financial Action Task Force (FATF) are about using the threat of economic punishment to move Pakistan away from funding terrorists operating against Afghanistan and India

Importance of this decision

  1. Decision to put Pakistan on grey list is important as this was taken defying the conventional wisdom
  2. It has been widely held that the US can never really nudge Pakistan away from using terror to dominate Afghanistan and destabilize India
  3. Why: The Pakistan army was too nuclear to displease and too important a regional partner for America to alienate
  4. Trump surprised the world by announcing a major cut in military assistance to Pakistan in January this year
  5. Trump has gone a step further — to mobilize the international community to squeeze Pakistan’s terror strategy by choking its finances

No support from China either

  1. The general consensus is that Pakistan has immunity thanks to its all-weather partnership with China
  2. Pakistan was confident that China will not let India and the West hang it out to dry on the question of terror finance
  3. China supported the decision to put Pakistan on a grey list
  4. China’s move followed a deal with India and the US that would let Beijing gain a larger role at the FATF in the future

Regional Economic Cooperation

  1. Pakistan has generally resisted all economic cooperation with India, either bilaterally or regionally
  2. But through the last decade and more, Pakistan has sat down with its two neighbors and Turkmenistan to advance the TAPI project
  3. Even the Taliban has apparently promised not to attack the TAPI pipeline that it described as a “national project”

Way forward

  1. The new dynamic in the region offers two important guidelines for Indian policy
  2. First, the past is not necessarily a guide to the future. After all, structural changes over time are inevitable
  3. Second, India has the resources and agency to alter the strategic condition of its north-west
Feb, 24, 2018

Pakistan on watchlist for terror financing


Mains Paper 2: IR | Important International institutions, agencies & fora, their structure, mandate

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Financial Action Task Force, ICRG on terror financing, UN Security Council

Mains level: Terror financing by Pakistan and global opposition against it


Pakistan back on the “grey list”

  1. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) Plenary has decided to put Pakistan back on the “grey list”
  2. This subjects it to direct monitoring and intense scrutiny by the International Co-operation Review Group (ICRG) on terror financing
  3. Pakistan had been on the same list from 2012 to 2015

Effect of this decision

  1. The move could see Pakistan face financial strictures, and ratings downgrades by international banking and credit rating agencies until Islamabad carries out a full crackdown on terror groups
  2. Pakistan will now be required to furnish a fresh report to the International Co-operation Review Group (ICRG), under a “Compliance Document”
  3. Accordingly, the country will undergo a review at the next Plenary in June, when it would be presented a full action plan on how it is expected to crack down on terror groups banned by the UN Security Council

International pressure to eliminate terrorism

  1. The move was pushed by four nominating countries, the U.S., the U.K., Germany, and France
  2. They had written to the FATF stating that even though Pakistan had an anti-money laundering/anti-terror funding regime in place, effectiveness of the implementation was inadequate


Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

  1. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 by the Ministers of its Member Jurisdictions
  2. The objectives of the FATF are to set standards and promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system
  3. The FATF is, therefore, a “policy-making body” which works to generate the necessary political will to bring about national legislative and regulatory reforms in these areas
  4. The FATF has developed a series of Recommendations that are recognized as the international standard for combating of money laundering and the financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction
  5. The FATF monitors the progress of its members in implementing necessary measures, reviews money laundering and terrorist financing techniques and counter-measures, and promotes the adoption and implementation of appropriate measures globally
  6. The FATF’s decision-making body, the FATF Plenary, meets three times per year
Jan, 08, 2018

US, Russia back India in bid to stop terror funding by Pakistan


Mains Paper 2: IR | Bilateral, regional & global groupings & agreements involving India &/or affecting India’s interests

From UPSC perspective, the following things are important:

Prelims level: Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

Mains level: Pakistan support to terrorist groups and India’s efforts at exposing Pakistan


Highlighting Pakistan’s role in abetment of terrorism

  1. India’s attempts at highlighting Pakistan’s role in abetment of terrorism and financing of terrorist organizations globally is meeting with success
  2. Countries like the US and Russia are backing New Delhi’s attempts to pressure Islamabad to stem the flow of funds to banned individuals and entities at forums like the international Financial Action Task Force (FATF)
  3. India has kept up its efforts to highlight Pakistan’s links with anti-India terrorist groups and abetment of terrorism at various multilateral forums including the United Nations general assembly as well as during bilateral interactions

Pakistan warned

  1. The government said American and Russian support had ensured that the FATF, in its meeting in November in Argentina, called on Pakistan to report on the action it was taking to curb terror funding
  2. FATF has warned Pakistan it could be put on a watch list if failed to crack down on the financing of terrorism


Financial Action Task Force (FATF)

  1. The Financial Action Task Force (FATF) is an inter-governmental body established in 1989 by the Ministers of its Member Jurisdictions
  2. The FATF currently comprises 35 member jurisdictions and 2 regional organizations (GCC and European Commission), representing most major financial centres in all parts of the globe
  3. The objectives of the FATF are to set standards and promote effective implementation of legal, regulatory and operational measures for combating money laundering, terrorist financing and other related threats to the integrity of the international financial system
  4. The FATF is, therefore, a “policy-making body” which works to generate the necessary political will to bring about national legislative and regulatory reforms in these areas
  5. The FATF’s decision-making body, the FATF Plenary, meets three times per year
  6. The FATF has developed a series of Recommendations that are recognized as the international standard for combating of money laundering and the financing of terrorism and proliferation of weapons of mass destruction
Oct, 25, 2016

59 killed as gunmen attack Quetta police training centre

  1. Event: Fifty-nine people were killed on Monday night as gunmen stormed a police training centre near Quetta  and detonated explosive vests
  2. Where: In Pakistan’s restive Balochistan province
  3. At least 106 people were injured
  4. Who: The Pakistani Taliban claimed responsibility for that attack
Oct, 07, 2016

IS recruits were educated, employed

  1. Source: A new World Bank study ‘Economic and Social Inclusion to Prevent Violent Extremism’
  2. Aim: To identify socio-economic traits that might explain why some are drawn to the IS
  3. Educated terrorists: Recruits into the Islamic State (IS) group are better educated than their average countryman, contrary to popular belief
  4. Out of 331 recruits described in a leaked IS database, only 17% did not finish high school, while a quarter had university-level educations
  5. Moreover, those offering to become suicide bombers ranked on average in the more educated group,
  6. Poverty not a driver: Poverty and deprivation were not at the root of support for the group
  7. Unemployment not an issue: Most of the 331 recruits also reported having a job before travelling to join the IS
Oct, 06, 2016

India calls Security Council unresponsive, ineffective

  1. India: ‘The 15-nation Security Council, the principal organ tasked with the maintenance of peace and security, has in a variety of ways become unresponsive to the needs of our time and ineffective to meeting the challenges it is confronted with’
  2. Why? For being indecisive on sanctioning leaders of organisations that it had designated as terrorist entities
  3. The issue cropped up after China extended its ‘technical hold’ on India’s bid for a U.N. ban on JeM chief Masood Azhar
Oct, 03, 2016

One jawan killed in attack on Army camp near J&K's Baramulla

  1. Militants mounted a suicide attack on an Army camp outside Baramulla town late on Sunday night
  2. This comes in less than a week after the Indian Special Forces smashed seven terror launch pads during a surgical strike across the Line of Control (LoC)
Oct, 01, 2016

Surgical strikes on terror hubs necessary

  1. Afghanistan: Supported India’s strikes in self-defence to neutralise terrorists inside Pakistan
  2. Terrorism will threaten us all if we do not combat it
  3. Therefore we feel that the time has come for tough action against terrorists
  4. There will be risk and cost involved in such measures but we have to undertake them because the time has come for us to combat this force
  5. If terror groups continue violence, then the actions taken [by India] will continue
Sep, 30, 2016

Who is Gulbuddin Hekmatyar?

  1. A controversial figure from the insurgency against the Soviets in the 1980s and the civil wars of the 1990s
  2. Designated a global terrorist by the United States, which has been leading an international military mission in Afghanistan for the past 15 years
  3. He served as prime minister in the 1990s, before the rise to power of the Taliban
  4. Has long been known as close to Pakistan
  5. His faction of Hezb-i-Islami has played a relatively small role in the current conflict, in which the Taliban have a leading role in battling the Western-backed government in Kabul
Sep, 30, 2016

Ghani formalises peace deal with 'Butcher of Kabul'

  1. What? Afghan President formalized a controversial accord with one of Afghanistan’s most notorious warlords
  2. Why? Govt hopes it will lead to more peace agreements
  3. Impact: The pact opens the door to the militant faction of Hezb-i-Islami, led by Gulbuddin Hekmatyar, playing an active role in politics
  4. Criticism: Human rights groups as well as many Afghans expressed dismay that Hekmatyar is unlikely to face any punishment for his alleged role in past abuses
  5. These include firing rockets into civilian areas during a civil war in an attack that killed and injured thousands of residents
  6. Future? Peace talks with the Taliban, the largest insurgent group, have yet to get off the ground, but both sides have said they are open to the idea
Sep, 29, 2016

India carries out surgical strikes against terror 'launch pads'

  1. News: India has carried out surgical strikes targeting “launch pads” for terrorists across the Line of Control (LoC)
  2. Information that terrorists planning to attack some towns and important places prompted Army to act
  3. Context: The attack comes in the wake of the September 18 terror strike in Uri that claimed the lives of 18 Indian soldiers
  4. India tried to solve the situation from the Uri attack at the diplomatic level but did not receive an adequate response

Discuss: Remember that we did a similar strike on the Myanmar border a few months ago? Always try to relate events together and recall similar instances. 

Sep, 29, 2016

Uri accused were trained at PoK camp

  1. Source: The National Investigation Agency (NIA) probe into Uri attack
  2. The two Pakistan-occupied Kashmir (PoK) residents facilitated the entry of four Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM) terrorists to the Army camp at Uri in Jammu and Kashmir
  3. The two accused, both residents of Muzaffarabad, had received training from Jaish cadres at a camp in Pir Chanasai in PoK
  4. They disclosed that they were tasked by JeM commanders to facilitate infiltration by a group of four JeM cadres, who carried out the Uri attack
  5. On being shown the photos of the four slain terrorists, the accused Faisal Hussain Awan identified one of them as Hafeez Ahmed
  6. They also confessed to have facilitated the movement of other terrorists in the area
Sep, 23, 2016

Terror-sponsor Pakistan backs LeT, JeM: U.S. Bill

  1. Context: The terrorist attack on an Army base in Uri in Jammu and Kashmir
  2. Pakistan State Sponsor of Terrorism Designation Act of 2016: It calls on the U.S. administration to provide a report on whether or not Pakistan qualifies as such under various U.S. laws
  3. Underlines multiple facts that the members think make Pakistan a state sponsor of terrorism
  4. Lists Inter-Services Intelligence (ISI) involvement in supporting terrorism in Afghanistan
  5. Department of State’s 2016 Country Reports on Terrorism: ‘Pakistan has not taken sufficient action against groups such as Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and Jaish-e-Mohammad (JeM), which continued to cooperate, train, organise, and fundraise in Pakistan
Sep, 12, 2016

Fifteen years of the war on terror- III

  1. The 9/11 attack, the jihadi ideology behind it and the wars that ensued also altered the political climate in many countries, leading to revolutions and coups
  2. It also put millions adrift, creating a refugee population that the world has probably never seen before
Sep, 12, 2016

Fifteen years of the war on terror- II

  1. The war on terror initially focused on the al-Qaeda, and the Taliban that had sheltered bin laden in Afghanistan
  2. It has evolved into a long-drawn-out conflict with multiple battlefields, many allies and myriad enemies
  3. Fifteen years later, its initial enemies are but shadows of themselves
  4. However, new enemies such as the Islamic State (IS) were spawned
  5. The 15 years also saw the rise of the home-grown terrorist, the biggest worry for security establishments
  6. It has been exacerbated by technology, which has helped terror organisations break down physical barriers such as borders by taking their ideology online
Sep, 12, 2016

Fifteen years of the war on terror- I

  1. On September 11, 2001, the U.S. saw the biggest attack on its homeland ever
  2. The al-Qaeda of Osama bin Laden launched coordinated attacks on the Twin Towers of the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Washington
  3. 2,753 people lost their lives that day, including those on a commercial aircraft that was forced to crash in rural Pennsylvania
  4. The attacks gave birth to the U.S.’ war on terror
Aug, 29, 2016

India plans anti-terror drive at NAM- II

  1. Background: The run-up to the UNGA session has been tense after the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) expressed deep concern over the situation in Jammu and Kashmir after Pakistan reached out to the OIC over the issue
  2. UN focus on terror: Given the number of terror attacks globally, terrorism has moved up UN’s agenda and many states are restless and desire UN to take a more active role
  3. Kashmir not involved: India’s strategy for the CCIT is independent of its strategy to counter Pakistan on Kashmir as it is a bilateral issue
Aug, 29, 2016

India plans anti-terror drive at NAM- I

  1. News: India is planning a major diplomatic outreach ahead of the 71st session of the United Nations General Assembly in order to push through the ‘Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism’ (CCIT)
  2. CCIT: Addresses, among other things, the issue of Pakistan’s alleged support for cross-border terrorism in south Asia
  3. Will be launched during the September 13-18 Non Aligned Movement summit in Venezuela
  4. UNGA focus: Global mood on the CCIT will be tested in NAM summit in Venezuela, which is just prior to United Nations General Assembly [UNGA]
  5. And, following India’s interactions at the NAM, the tactics for the CCIT will be fine tuned for UNGA
Aug, 24, 2016

U.S.' security assistance to Pakistan falls by 73% since 2011

  1. Reason: Deterioration in ties following the killing of Osama bin Laden in a Navy SEALs raid on his Abbottabad hideout and a U.S. airstrike on a Pakistani border post in Salala that killed 24 Pakistani soldiers
  2. Context: The report prepared for the U.S. Congress by the Congressional Research Service (CRS)
  3. There is also a 53% decrease in economic assistance since 2011
  4. Earlier this month, the Pentagon decided not to pay $300 million in military reimbursements to Islamabad
  5. Reason: Pak’s alleged reluctance to act against the Haqqani network
Jul, 14, 2016

IS may have set up sleeper cells in India

  1. News: The Islamic State may have set up sleeper cells in India, according to the new Iraqi Ambassador to India
  2. Reason: Influence of foreign-funded Islamic seminaries and preachers who teach an exclusivist version of Islam
  3. The Ambassador told that India should watch the Islamic seminaries and preachers more closely to understand the kind of Islam being preached
  4. Islamic seminaries and televangelists are powerful tools in the war that the IS is waging and therefore countries should exercise more control on these sections
  5. Sleeper cells: Underground groups of trained terrorists who wait to stage attacks and are ready to act at their leaders’ command
Jul, 04, 2016

India to push for global terror convention

  1. News: India has revised its proposal for a Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT) to be passed during the upcoming UN General Assembly
  2. Context: The range of global terror attacks recently – in Paris, Brussels, Orlando and Dhaka – warrant terror to be at the top of the UN’s agenda
  3. Background: The original draft was proposed by India 20 years ago but was opposed by the US, the Organisation of Islamic Countries and Latin America
  4. India has been able to complete a draft which effectively counters the opposition from the 3 main blocs that have raised objections
Jun, 22, 2016

US will not abandon Afghanistan

  1. Context: Statement by US’ Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (SRAP) at Atlantic Council
  2. The assassination of Afghan Taliban leader Mullah Akhtar Mansoor in a drone strike last month did not indicate a change in the U.S strategy of supporting negotiations with the outfit
  3. US would be cautious about troops reductions in Afghanistan, even as the Obama administration is rethinking its earlier plan for troop reduction from 9800 to 5500 by the end of the year
  4. US would be committing three billion dollars annually until 2020 for the security and reconstruction of Afghanistan
  5. This support could not be indefinite, an abrupt and immediate disengagement was not an option.
  6. The NATO summit next month in Warsaw will demonstrate the commitment of the US and allies to secure Afghanistan
Jun, 01, 2016

Pakistan still promotes 'good' jihadis: NGO- II

  1. The background and aftermath of the Pathankot airbase attack in India symbolise the impunity accorded to good jihadists
  2. Initiatives: By both India and Pakistan- the unscheduled visit of the Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Lahore in 2015 were meant to enhance peace process
  3. However, derailing the nascent process was likely the motive for a major attack on the Pathankot base the very next month
  4. Pak: After the Peshawar terror attack on an Army Public School in December 2014, military and civilian Pakistani establishment announced a 20-point National Action Plan for countering terrorism
  5. It included measures to prevent banned groups from operating and/or regrouping under new names, preventing terror funding, and dismantling terrorist communication networks among others
Jun, 01, 2016

Pakistan still promotes 'good' jihadis: NGO- I

  1. Context: The report ‘Pakistan’s Jihadist Heartland: Southern Punjab’ by the International Crisis Group, an NGO engaged in advocacy to prevent and resolve conflict
  2. Good v/s Bad: The case of southern Punjab (which borders India) best illustrates Islamabad’s abject failure to end the distinction between ‘good’ and ‘bad’ jihadists
  3. Continued state sponsorship remains a source of empowerment for good jihadists, such as the Jaish, which has networks across the province
May, 07, 2016

U.S. Congress seeks to block $450 mn Pak. aid

  1. What? The U.S. Congress has initiated a move to block $450 million in aid to Pakistan
  2. Why? For failing to demonstrate its commitment and taking action against the Haqqani terror network
  3. This is one of the provisions of the National Defence Authorisation Act (NDAA)
  4. It doesn’t allow the U.S. government to waive the above mentioned condition in ‘national interest
Apr, 16, 2016

US wants Pakistan to act against all militant groups

  1. Context: A series of U.S. cables released by the National Security Archive
  2. Link: Cables suggest strong links between the Pakistan’s ISI and the Haqqani network
  3. The ISI paid $200,000 to the Haqqani network for a suicide attack on a CIA camp in Afghanistan in 2009
  4. US has asked Pakistan to target all militant groups, including Haqqani Network, Al-Qaeda, Lashkar-e Taiba
Apr, 16, 2016

Hidden vetoes must go, India tells UN

  1. Context: India has sought transparency in the U.N. procedures to designate a group or an individual terrorist
  2. Existing rules: Security Council members to oppose any move in the sanctions committees in a clandestine manner and without offering any explanation
  3. The sanctions committees can take decisions only unanimously, and this means any of the 15 members can veto a move
  4. Hidden veto: This amounts to allowing a ‘hidden veto’ for every member of the council
  5. Background: The demand comes days after China blocked its bid to designate Jaish-e-Mohammad chief Masood Azhar a terrorist
Apr, 15, 2016

EU approves passenger data-sharing

  1. Context: The European Parliament voted to force airlines to share passenger information with EU countries
  2. Aim: To help detect jihadists
  3. System: Passenger Name Record (PNR)
  4. It was a five years of debate that intensified after the Paris and Brussels attacks
  5. It was passed after the privacy concerns were resolved
  6. European Commission had first proposed the law in 2011
Mar, 18, 2016

PM to address World Sufi Forum

  1. News: Prime Minister Modi addresses the World Sufi Forum in New Delhi
  2. Context: Forum has been convened by the All India Ulama and Mashaikh Board
  3. Objective: To discuss the role of Sufism in countering rising global terror
  4. Forum will debate long-term alternatives to counter rising issues of radicalization and use of terror in the name of religion
  5. Significance: It is expected to emphasize and reassert India’s position as one of the global centres for moderate ideology in Islam
  6. World Focus: The 4-day event is likely to be attended by over 200 delegates, including foreign delegates from 20 countries
  7. Spiritual leaders, scholars, academicians and theologists from Egypt, Jordan, Turkey, UK, USA, Canada and Pakistan, among other countries, are expected to be present
Feb, 26, 2016

India moving U.N. to blacklist Masood

  1. Context: Terrorist attack on Pathankot air base
  2. News: India to approach UN to include the Pakistan-based terror mastermind Maulana Masood Azhar on the list of globally designated terrorists
  3. Nodal Agency: 1267 Sanctions Committee under UN, includes the name of terrorist and terror-organisation on the sanctions list
  4. The attempt to isolate Masood Azhar has a greater possibility to succeed at the 1267 Sanctions Committee
  5. Challenge: In Jun 2015, India moved the committee against Zakiur Rahman Lakhvi release from jail, but China did not support due to its strategic interest in Pakistan
Feb, 05, 2016

IS threat: Maharashtra rolls out deradicalisation plan

The plan aims to create an environment of solidarity and trust among the minority, and envisages different departments undertaking various schemes to reach out to the minority.

  1. To face the challenges posed by various home-grown extremists and the global IS terrorists
  2. Maharashtra government has rolled out a deradicalisation programme for the minority community
  3. The plan, brought out by the State Home Department, is a 50-point socio-economic strategy with the aim of ‘bringing youth of the minority community into the mainstream’
  4. The State Education Department will launch a mid-day meal scheme in Urdu schools
  5. Also provide textbooks at subsidised rates, and teach Urdu as optional subject in 300 Marathi shalas (schools)
Feb, 03, 2016

President of India inaugurates Counter-Terrorism Conference 2016

The President of India inaugurated the Counter-Terrorism Conference- 2016 at Jaipur.

  1. Speaking on the occasion, the President said that terrorism is undoubtedly the single gravest threat that humanity is facing today.
  2. It is imperative that the world acts in unison against terrorism, without political considerations.
  3. An important aspect of counter-terrorism strategy is capacity building to prevent attacks.
  4. Through intelligence collection and collation, development of technological capabilities, raising of Special Forces and enactment of special laws.
  5. The predominant focus has to be on the political management of terrorism.
Jan, 25, 2016

India, Arab League vow to check terror, funding sources

Minister cited “India’s model of unity in diversity” as an example for the world to counter indoctrination and radicalisation.

  1. India and the Arab world must join hands to eliminate the menace, those who silently sponsor terror groups could end up being used by them.
  2. Those who believe that silent sponsorship of such terrorist groups can bring rewards must realise that they have their own agenda.
  3. They are adept at using the benefactor more effectively than the sponsor has used them.
  4. Speaking at the first First Ministerial Meeting of the Arab-India Cooperation Forum which External Affairs Minister described as a “turning point” in India’s ties with the Arab world.
Jan, 23, 2016

India, France can gain by sharing strategies against terrorism

  1. India and France are carrying out Shakti 2016 in Rajasthan which reflects the common interests of two countries.
  2. It is the joint exercise which focusses on counter-terror and counter-insurgency operations.
  3. Both sides will benefit by exchanging ideas and strategies for a larger goal due to different experiences in handling terror.
  4. Greater French support for India’s decades-old anti-terror struggle would help India attain both regional as well as global targets in the fight against terrorism.
Jan, 22, 2016

Vulnerable targets

Pakistan must act strongly against all terrorists for the sake of its own younger generation.

  1. Terror attack at Bacha Khan University in Pakistan has grim echoes of the Peshawar Army Public School massacre in December 2014.
  2. Targeting schools and colleges reflect the jihadis’ opposition to education, which is a force of modernisation and empowerment.
  3. Pakistan needs to invoke Bacha Khan’s ( khan Abdul Gaffer khans’ ) legacy and reverse the Islamist course taken by its society and polity.
  4. Pakistan will have to muster the will to act against terrorists of all shades, and not choose between the “good” and the “bad” Taliban.
Jan, 18, 2016

Ouagadougou lessons

New Delhi needs to initiate a national audit of police and intelligence preparedness, based on global best-practices.

  1. The killings this weekend at the Splendid Hotel in Burkina Faso’s Ouagadougou hold out important lessons to India about the threat of terror.
  2. One, the attacks show, the threat doesn’t come from any one organisation.
  3. Second,the use of conventional military force against terrorist groups doesn’t guarantee an end to terrorism.
  4. Third, the critical line of defence against terrorism is a well-trained and well-equipped domestic police force, capable of interdicting and responding to attacks, thus mitigating their impact.
  5. Most states and major cities now have élite special weapons and tactics units but their training and infrastructure are often ramshackle.
  6. Training of first responders — the constables is dismal.
  7. Deficiency in training of elite national forces, the National Security Guard was ruthlessly exposed in Pathankot,
  8. Finally, the Intelligence Bureau and the Research and Analysis Wing remain understaffed and underfunded.
Jan, 15, 2016

Bet on peace

After Pathankot, Pakistan has taken the right first steps. India has nothing to gain from not talking.

  1. New Delhi must beware the trap of linking future diplomatic engagement with the fate of the Pathankot investigation in Pakistan.
  2. This would, for one, give forces in Pakistan’s military establishment who are hostile to normalisation a perverse incentive to derail action against their jihadist clients.
  3. Secondly, military retaliation against terrorism will impose asymmetric impacts on India’s growing economy.
  4. Finally, disengagement shuts the door on long-term gains.
  5. Even if India realises no security gains from dialogue with Pakistan, there are none to be had from not talking, either.
  6. Dialogue, though, opens up possibilities for incremental gains on business, resource management and cultural contacts.
  7. It thus strengthens those sections of Pakistani society with interests in peace, like the business community and civil society.
  8. India’s interests are best served by cold-blooded defence of its strategic interests — not the seductive heat of righteous rage.
Jan, 14, 2016

Breaking The Terror Cycle

Countries have the right to self defence under international law and India can not legate the problem of terrorism to that of political management alone.

  1. Nuclear weapons have become the licence to undertake terror through its proxies.
  2. Hope that full engagement with Pakistan can withstand major terrorist attacks is misplaced.
  3. Political pressures and the need to show action inevitably lead to disruptions.
  4. The time has come to seek to break this cycle
  5. Answer to Pak sponsored attacks cannot lie in engagement, for it has not worked, and nor has its opposite.
Jan, 14, 2016

Pakistan was under global pressure

U.S. called for swift action; China issued two statements condemning the terror strike.

  1. The Indian government had made it clear that there would be “no talks without action” from Pakistan.
  2. On the basis of evidence and leads handed over by India about the Pathankot attackers who killed 7 Indian soldiers.
  3. Ministry of External Affairs kept up the pressure by refusing to confirm or cancel the Foreign Secretary-level talks which had been informally agreed to for January 15.
  4. Security experts also warned against reading too much into the action against Jaish-e-Mohammad.
  5. The group that was set up by Masood Azhar after he was released at Kandahar by the Indian government in 1999 in exchange for hostages on board IC-814.
Jan, 04, 2016

U.S. for joint fight against terror

  1. The U.S. has condemned the terrorist attack on the Indian Air Force base in Pathankot.
  2. It urged all countries in the region to work together to disrupt and dismantle in terrorist networks.
  3. US said that it has always maintained that Pakistan requires to do more to rein in terrorists who target neighbouring countries.
  4. It considers better relations between India and Pakistan good for its South Asia strategy.
  5. So, it wants like India and Pakistan to continue their dialogue.
Dec, 18, 2015

United Nations adopts plan to attack Islamic State's funding

Security council unanimously backs resolution to target group’s income and block its use of global financial system.

  1. This aimed at disrupting revenues that Islamic State receives from oil and antiquities sales, ransom payments and other criminal activities.
  2. The resolution, sponsored by the US and Russia, elevates Isis to same level as al-Qaida, reflecting its growing threat and split from the terror network behind the 9/11 attacks.
  3. Isis controls a large swath of Syria and Iraq, including oil and gas fields, though bombing campaigns by the US-led coalition and ground forces have enabled Iraq to regain some territory.
Dec, 17, 2015

Saudi Arabia announces 34-state Islamic military alliance against terrorism

A new Saudi-led Islamic alliance to fight terrorism will share information and train, equip and provide forces if necessary for the fight against Islamic State militants.

  1. Saudi Arabia announces 34 nations Islamic coalition to fight terrorism
  2. It has been established in pursuance of the objectives and principles of the charter of the Organization of Islamic Cooperation (OIC).
  3. It calls for all member states to cooperate to combat terrorism in all its forms and manifestations.
Nov, 16, 2015

G20 for joint steps to fight terrorism

  1. Mr. Ban stressed that world leaders need to be robust in their response which is within the rule of law and with respect for human rights.
  2. There was a need for close cooperation within the international community to reject and fight terrorism in all its manifestation.
  3. There was a need to address the underline drivers of violent extremism.
Sep, 09, 2015

India for better channels with Pak. Rangers

  1. The chiefs of BSF and Pakistani Rangers will meet after the high profile NSA level talks were cancelled.
  2. India will stress on adding more layers of channel of communication with Pakistan Rangers.
  3. India will ask for frequent joint patrolling and confidence-building measures.
  4. The talks are held biannually, started in 1989, but the timings have not been followed.
Aug, 07, 2015

Cross-border terrorism: Jihadist-military project at work

  1. The recent back-to-back strikes indicate the presence of stray elements in Pakistan, who are against the Indo-Pak engagement.
  2. Though, it can be argued that Pakistan is not involved in these cases, but there is lack of systemic response from their govt.’s side.
  3. Often, Pakistan projects itself as a victim of terror in the hands of TTP and other sectarian group.
  4. But, it is also deeply involved in supporting Afghan Taliban, the Haqqani network, and anti-jihadist elements.
  5. There are instances of Pakistani military engaging with Jihadist elements for strategic gains.
Aug, 06, 2015

It’s time to be more assertive: Ajit Doval


  1. National Security Adviser Ajit Doval has said that deterrence was the credibility that a nation could show its strength when required.
  2. But the lack of a will to exercise power is as good as not having any power.

The people who will hold power tomorrow, will be those who can make you think what they want you to think.

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