Saying that it needed more time to analyse the evidence put forward, China, yet again, put a “technical hold” on Azhar’s designation. As the world speculated over what China might gain out of the move, India, on its part, received unprecedented support at the UN with regards to Azhar’s listing.
It was in 2009 that India, under the UPA government, first moved the proposal for Azhar’s designation. External Affairs minister Sushma Swaraj took to Twitter on Friday to describe what the facts of the listing of Azhar were.
After 2009, India once again pushed for the designation in 2016, something that was co-sponsored by the US, UK and France. Two years ago, in 2017, these three countries moved the proposal.
Cut to 2019, the proposal was once again moved by the US, UK and France. China had time till March 13 to decide how to use its veto-yielding powers with regards to the designation and it did so by putting a technical hold on Azhar’s listing.
India’s biggest takeaway, however, has come from the fact that it was supported by not just US, UK and France but also by 14 of the 15 United National Security Council members. Swaraj also mentions that the proposal for Azhar’s designation was co-sponsored by Australia, Bangladesh, Italy, Japan—all non-members of the Security Council.
The Ministry of External Affairs had, in a statement earlier, acknowledged the efforts made by several countries on pushing for the designation.
“We are grateful for the efforts of the Member States who moved the designation proposal and the unprecedented number of all other Security Council members as well as non-members who joined as co-sponsors.”
India’s proposal has now received a fresh boost with France on Friday announcing that it had frozen all of Azhar’s assets. A joint statement released by the French interior ministry, finance ministry and foreign ministry said that France has always been and will always be on India’s side in the fight against terrorism.
The statement further read that France would speak to its European partners to include Azhar on the European Union list of people involved in terrorist acts.
This is not the first time that China has put a technical hold on Azhar’s listing and neither is this the first time that India has expressed displeasure over China’s staunch stand on the issue.
Interestingly, there has been a stark shift in the Indian character of diplomacy and the words in which India has expressed its disappointment over the blocking of Azhar’s designation. In a statement in 2016, India had named China as having blocked Azhar’s listing. In the statements from 2017 and 2019, however, there has been no mention of the Asian giant in halting the process.