In the backdrop of growing extremism and violence in Africa and India, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi sought the support of African countries for the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism. India and Africa have decided to bolster their cooperation in combating terror through intelligence sharing, counter-terrorism. “When terror snuffs out life on the streets and beaches, and in malls and schools of Africa, we feel your pain as our own. And, we see the links that unite us against this threat,” Mr Modi told African leaders at the third India-Africa Forum Summit.
“We also see that when our oceans are no longer safe for trade, we all suffer together. And, when nations are caught in conflict within, no one around remains untouched.”
Africa has faced terror attacks from terrorist groups like Boko Haram and Al-Shabaab. Boko Haram, which has a strong presence in Nigeria, has now spread its tentacles to the neighbouring countries, leading to a joint coalition of troops combating the group in the region.
The Indian leader also sought to enhance India-Africa cooperation in cyber security. “And, we know that our cyber networks bring opportunities, but also carry huge risks. So, when it comes to security, distance no longer insulates us from each other.”
India and Africa share a sizeable maritime boundary in the Indian Ocean Region. Many of the African countries in the region are of strategic importance to India. “We wish to deepen our cooperation in maritime security and hydrography, and countering terrorism and extremism; and, why we must have a UN Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism,” Mr Modi said.
Peacekeeping has been a major issue in Africa. “We will also provide support for Africa Union’s peacekeeping efforts. And, we will train African peacekeepers here and in Africa. We must also have a stronger voice in decisions on UN Peacekeeping Missions,” said Mr Modi.
India is the third largest contributor to peacekeeping troops in the world at present. India has been pushing for a bigger say in decision-making on peacekeeping in the UN for troop contributing countries.
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