Hamid Ansari in Mali: Amid Pakistan strikes, India quietly bolsters anti-terror front with Africa

Amid headline-hogging strikes by India to hit back at Pakistan for the Uri massacre, thousands of miles away Vice-President Hamid Ansari engaged in quiet and effective diplomacy to forge a united front against terror with two key West African nations, including Nigeria and Mali. In Bamako, the capital of Mali, the vice-president outlined a template of mutual empowerment with the African continent by dovetailing India’s Africa policy with the vision of African resurgence crystallized in Agenda 2063.

In the first high-level visit from India to Mali, Mr Ansari pledged India’s unremitting support for the reconstruction and flowering of this nation of poets, scholars and musicians and underscored that New Delhi will work closely with Bamako to restore the glory of Timbuktu, which has been savagely assaulted and scarred by al-Qaeda in Maghreb militants.

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Darkening shadow of terror across the globe: India asks world to join hands

Sydney and Peshawar may be thousands of miles apart in different continents, but the hostage crisis in Sydney and the senseless killings of 132 children in Peshawar by hardened militants and criminals underline the insidious spread of terrorism across the globe. Against this backdrop, India, a repeated victim of terror attacks, has exhorted the world community to join hands to “decisively and comprehensively defeat terrorism.”
Transcending boundaries and differences – this should be the operative mantra for the world to collectively fight the scourge of terrorism. For any ambivalence or half-heartedness on this front can spawn hundreds of such tragedies in the future, with innocent victims caught in the crossfire of state politics and the mindless terror machinery of warped-up ideologies.

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Peshawar killings: Modi says India shares pain, calls for jointly crushing terror

Terror blurs boundaries, and widens the arc of sympathy. In the wake of the barbaric terror attack on an army school in Peshawar which killed 132 students, India’s Prime Minister Narendra Modi promptly picked up the phone and rang up his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif and shared India’s “heard-rending sorrow and pain” at this horrific assault and stressed the need for joining hands to defeat the scourge of terror.
Mr Modi called Mr Sharif on December 16 evening, soon after the latter returned from Peshawar to Islamabad. In his telephonic conversation, Mr Modi “condemned in the strongest terms the brutal terrorist attack” and underlined that “this savage killing of innocent children, who are the epitome of the finest human values, in a temple of learning was not only an attack against Pakistan, but an assault against the entire humanity.”
In a compelling message, Mr Modi conveyed to Mr Sharif that “this moment of shared pain and mourning is also a call for our two countries and all those who believe in humanity to join hands to decisively and comprehensively defeat terrorism, so that the children in Pakistan, India and elsewhere do not have to face a future darkened by the lengthening shadow of terrorism.”

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Russia’s military pact with Pakistan in long-term interest of India, assures Putin

Russia’s military pact with Pakistan has triggered a wave of anxiety among India’s diplomatic-strategic establishment about the future of the much-touted special and privileged partnership between the two strategic partners. But Moscow feels such concerns are a gross-misreading, with President Vladimir Putin assuring that the pact with Pakistan was mainly aimed at counter-terrorism and underlined that it will only serve the long-term interests of India and Russia.

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