Further highlighting China’s duplicitous role regarding the fight extremist groups who use violence and cloak of religious rhetoric to further nakedly self-serving political goals, Beijing once again blocked the passage of a United Nations Security Council (UNSC) proposal to blacklist a Pakistani-backed terrorist.
Sajid Mir, member of UN-designated Pakistani terrorist group Lashkar-e-Taiba (LeT) and main accused mastermind of the 26/11 terrorist attacks in Mumbai — which left 166 people dead — was due to be blacklisted at the UNSC.
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The proposal, tabled by the United States and co-sponsored by India, called to subject Mir to assets freeze, travel ban and arms embargo. Incidentally, Mir has a bounty of $5 million placed on his head by the US government.
Incidentally, this comes at a time when Pakistan is attempting to be removed from the so-called ‘Grey List’ of the Financial Action Task Force (FATF), a global watchdog body that tracks financial transfers to proscribed terrorist groups.
To add salt to the wound, Prime Minister Narendra Modi is currently in Samarkand, Uzbekistan, attending the 2022 Shanghai Cooperation Organistation’s (SCO) summit, with both Chinese President Xi Jinping and Russian President Vladimir Putin in attendance.
In an ironic twist, one of the core topics on the SCO’s agenda is the so-called ‘fight against terrorism.’
None of this should come as a surprise — this is by no means the first time that China has used its position on the Security Council to shield Pakistan-backed terrorists, who have the blood of thousands of Indian citizens on their hands.
In August China put a technical hold was placed on a US-backed proposal to blacklist Abdul Rauf Azhar, the brother of Jaish-e Mohammed (JeM) chief Masood Azhar, accused of being responsible for the 2019 Pulwama attack.
Interestingly, Beijing has its own problems with violent extremist groups — in the early 2000s, China suffered a spate of deadly terror attacks attributed to extremists operating out of Uighur-majority Xinjiang province, fighting for a cause Beijing labels as ‘separatist’.
In response, China went to on imprison as many as a million Uighur Muslims, in what it calls ‘re-education’ camps and what the West has labelled ‘concentration camps’ — in a chilling evocation of the atrocities committed by Nazi Germany.
Unlike the United States, India has so far restrained itself from labelling the situation in Xinjiang as ‘genocide.’