New Delhi: China has stopped India from accomplishing a crucial goal at the United Nations: getting Masood Azhar, the chief of terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed, blacklisted as a terrorist. The Foreign Ministry reacted sharply, stating "(the) Chinese action confirms the prevalence of double standards in the fight against terrorism."
- India wants Masood Azhar on UN blacklist for terrorists
- Earlier, China had used 'technical hold' to prevent this
- Now, in big snub to Delhi, it has outright blocked India's move
In April, China placed on hold India's request to add Azhar to the United Nations' al Qaeda-Islamic State blacklist. In October, it extended the "technical hold" which was to expire today. What it did yesterday was exercise its veto, so Beijing's objections are no longer temporary or subject to a search for more details of India's request.
The Jaish-e-Mohammed has already been blacklisted by the 15-nation Security Council, but not its leader, Maulana Masood Azhar. China's blocking of India's move is an international and significant show of support for its long-time ally Pakistan.
India has accused the Jaish-e-Mohammed of the deadly terror attack in January on the Pathankot air force base in which seven military personnel were killed.
Technical holds can be lifted and often arise when a Security Council member wants more information. But sometimes they lead to a permanent blocking of a proposed blacklisting.
If the 48-year-old was blacklisted by the UN Security Council, he would face a global travel ban and asset freeze.
Beijing's stand on Azhar has been an acute stress point on India-China relations this year.