Blocking India's proposal to ban JeM leader Rauf Azhar, Exposes China's Duplicitous Stand on Terrorism
China has blocked a proposal by India and the US at the UNSC to designate Abdul Rauf Azhar deputy chief of the Jaish-e-Mohammad, as a “global terrorist”. The article explained Who is Azhar, and what are the sanction against him and Why has China blocked the proposal?
By Vidit Jain
In August 2022, China blocked India, and US joint move to designate Abdul Rauf Azhar, Deputy Chief of a Pakistan-based terrorist organization Jaish-e-Mohammad, as a global terrorist at the UN Security Council. In 1999, Rauf Azhar, then a Harkat- ul - Mujahideen terrorist, allegedly masterminded the hijacking of (IC-814), an Indian Airliner carrying 155 passengers from Kathmandu to Delhi. After the hijack, the plane was flown to Kandahar in Afghanistan where the Taliban, in league with ISI provided a supportive environment to the hijackers. The hijackers belonging to Harkat -ul-Mujahideen demanded the release of Masood Azhar and his two other inmates, Rauf Azhar's elder brother. Notably, in year 1994, Masood Azhar was captured by Indian Forces when he came to Jammu & Kashmir to meet his cadre, tasked with merging Harkat-ul-Jihad Islami (HuJI) and Harkat-ul-Mujahideen, into the Harkat-ul-Ansar (HuA). After his release, he went on to found Jaish-e-Mohammad, the dreaded terror organization that masterminded the 2001 parliamentary attack, 2016 Pathankot attack, and 2019 Pulwama attack bringing India and Pakistan to the verge of nuclear war twice.
Masood Azhar formed Jaish -e- Mohammad after splitting up from Harkat-ul-Mujahideen in 1999. He was supported by Al-Qaeda and the Taliban in forming Jaish-e- Mohammad. Since 2000, Massod Azhar and Rauf Azhar have been involved in masterminding behind many terrorist attacks in India under the banner of Jaish-e-Mohammad.
Both Jaish and Lashkar -e- Taiba have been supported by al-Qaeda and Taliban to spread terror across the Indian Borders since the 1990s. Both outfits began an era of religious extremism following an influx of Mujahideen fighters purportedly to fight against the enemies of Islam.
Over the last two decades, there have been many instances, where the Indian Representatives in United Nations Security Council. They have made effort to establish a link between Jaish-e-Mohammad and Lashkar-e-Taiba to Taliban and Al-Qaeda. India was struggling to get ahead of these organizations by getting them tagged as Global Terrorists or Global Terror Group, and since the attack of 9/11, the US has been proactively supporting India on these agendas in United Nations Security Council. But, China has been a roadblock in getting these organizations and individuals spreading terrorism all over the world on the list of Global Terrorists of the United Nations Security Council.
The action demonstrated by China in blocking the proposals made by India and USA in declaring the individuals and organizations operating in and around Pakistan and Afghanistan, indeed suggests that China has been supporting Pakistan’s and Afghanistan’s terror organizations and has a hand in spreading terrorism all over the world. Though China has made lofty claims to counter terrorism, its position in the UN Security Council vis a vie Jaish -e- Mohammed and Lashkar-e-Taiba have made it obvious that China's claims are hypocritical.
In the year 2019, China voted against India’s proposal to list the Jaish-e-Mohammad Chief, Masood Azhar as a Global terrorist following the deadly Pulwama attack killing India's 40 soldiers in Kashmir. There has been a list of attacks that were executed by the Jasih-e-Mahommed and the same has taken responsibility for terror attacks all over India since 2000. The first attack was carried out in April 2000, through fidayeen (suicide) attack on the Indian Army Barrack in Kashmir, under the banner of Jaish-e-Mohammad; followed by the attack on Jammu & Kashmir Assembly in October 2001; then the attack on Parliament in December 2001; then in 2014-2015 a series of attacks on police stations and Army camps in Kathua, Samba, Handwara, leading to the deaths of over a dozen security personnel; then 2016 Pathan Kot and Nagrota attack killing 10 security personal Pulwama; an attack on the Indian consulate in Mazar-i-Sharif in Afghanistan in 2016; Jaish-e-Mohammad is also said to have participated in a large rally in Kashmir against the Indian government after Indian forces killed a young militant separatist Burhan Wani; and lastly the Pulwama Attack in February 2019 said to be one of the deadliest attacks killing 40 Indian paramilitary soldiers. There have many other terror acts for which Jaish-e-Mohammad has though not taken responsibility but the individuals affiliated have carried out such attacks in 2013-2014 among other attacks in Jammu and Kashmir.
Jaish-e-Mohammad has joined with the Lashkar-e-Taiba, Taliban, and Al-Qaeda to defeat external forces in Afghanistan by conducting deadly attacks on the USA, UK, and NATO Countries. Thereby USA and India have raised a proposal under the 1267 Sanctions Committee of the United Nations Security Council on impose sanctions against Abdul Rauf Azhar and putting his name on the list of Global Terrorists. The said proposal was raised on 11 August under the 1267 Sanctions Committee of the United Nations Security Council, to which 14 members agreed to impose a sanction, but China blocked the move by holding out, stating they need some more time on due diligence before passing the said proposal.
What is the 1267 Sanction Committee of the United Nations Security Council?
1267 Sanctions Committee of the United Nations Security Council is a committee formed in 1999 to impose sanctions on individuals and entities having a link to Al-Qaeda and ISIL (Da’esh) or individuals and entities having a prominent role in supporting the terrorist activities conducted by Al-Qaeda and ISIL (Da’esh). The committee makes a Consolidated List that includes all individuals and entities subject to measures imposed by the Security Council. The inclusion of all names on one Consolidated List is to facilitate the implementation of the measures, and neither implies that all names are listed under one regime, nor that the criteria for listing specific names are the same. For each instance where the Security Council has decided to impose measures in response to a threat, a Security Council Committee manages the sanctions regime. Each sanctions committee established by the United Nations Security Council, therefore, publishes the names of individuals and entities listed in relation to that committee as well as information concerning the specific measures that apply to each listed name.
This has been the second time this year that China has blocked the joint proposal made by India and the USA on 1st June to impose sanctions on the Pakistan-based top militant of Laksher-e- Taiba Abdul Rehman Makki, who has been responsible for many terror activities in India and USA and thus has been designated terrorists in USA and India according to their domestic laws. Abdul Rehman Makki is the brother-in-law of Laksher-e-Taiba chief, who is the mastermind behind the Mumbai attacks on 26/11 and has taken responsibility for the same, which has been one of the deadliest attacks on civilians in India in November 2008, killing hundreds of citizens and foreign nationals in Mumbai.
In 2009, India made the sole proposal for declaring Masood Ashar as a global terrorist in United Nations Security Council but failed due to lack of support, then another attempt was made in 2016 after the Pathankot Attack along with the USA, UK, and France for imposing sanction under 1267 Sanction Committee of United Nation Security Council but the same was been blocked by China. In 2017 again the same proposal was made by the USA, UK, and France to which again China had blocked the same. Then again proposal listing the terror activities in which Masood Azhar has marked his involvement was made by the USA, UK, and France to make Masood Azhar a Global Terrorist to which the United Nations Security Council has declared him a Global Terrorist, and surprisingly in the said list, Pulwama Attack was not mentioned but it was a decade old landmark diplomatic win for India, by United Nation Security Council declaring him as a Global Terrorists.
China Blocking the Sanctions
In the recent proposals made by the USA and India, China can put a hold on the sanction for a period of six months which can be extended by three months, thus till then at any time China can exercise its power to repudiate the proposal. This has been a second dubious act by China in holding the proposal made by the USA and India in August for declaring Abdul Rauf Azhar, as a global Terrorist and the first one being the holding of the proposal for declaring Abdul Rehman Makki, a Laskar commander. Chinese stand makes it evident that despite its strong positioning against terrorism and its lofty official declarations in the global forums and United Nations Security Council. It has been covertly supporting Pakistan-based terror groups. Also, it seems more like a state policy.
Disclaimer: This paper is the author's individual scholastic contribution and does not necessarily reflect the organization's viewpoint.