In a message to Pakistan’s new Prime Minister Imran Khan, India and the US have jointly issued a stern reminder to Islamabad to expeditiously bring to justice the perpetrators of the Mumbai, Pathankot (2016), Uri (2016), and other cross-border terrorist attacks.
The pointed message to Pakistan at the inaugural 2+2 dialogue in New Delhi came ahead of the 10th anniversary of the Mumbai terror mayhem and underlined the deepening counter-terror collaboration between India and the US.
“The ministers denounced any use of terrorist proxies in the region, and in this context, they called on Pakistan to ensure that the territory under its control is not used to launch terrorist attacks on other countries,” said the joint statement.
Underlining that India-US counter-terrorism cooperation has acquired a new “qualitative edge and purpose,” India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj welcomed “the recent designations of Lashkar-e-Taiba terrorists by the United States.”
“They underscore the international community’s scrutiny over the threat of terrorism emanating from Pakistan, which has affected India and the United States alike,” she said.
“In the 10th anniversary of the 26/11 attacks, we recognised the importance of justice and retribution for the masterminds behind this terrorist attack,” she said.
The talks also saw a reaffirmation of the India-US Terrorists Designations Dialogue that has bolstered strengthening cooperation and action against anti-India terrorist groups operating from Pakistan, including Al-Qaida, ISIS, Lashkar-e-Taiba, Jaish-e-Mohammad, Hizb-ul Mujahideen, the Haqqani Network, Tehrik-i-Taliban Pakistan, D-Company, and their affiliates.
“This is probably the strongest India-US joint statement against Pakistan-based terror and terror outfits which continue to operate with impunity. US President Donald Trump has gone much beyond his predecessors to pile up pressure on Pakistan to act against anti-India terror groups,” said Manish Chand, Editor-in-Chief, India Writes Network and India and World magazine.
“The 2+2 joint statement on terror should be a wake-up call for Imran Khan, who has chosen to ignore terror and preferred to focus on Kashmir in his remarks after election as the prime minister of Pakistan,” said Mr Chand.
Significantly, the US has reiterated support for India-backed UN Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism.
“They committed to enhance their ongoing cooperation in multilateral fora such as the UN and FATF. They reaffirmed their support for a UN Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism that will advance and strengthen the framework for global cooperation and reinforce the message that no cause or grievance justifies terrorism,” said the joint statement.