Despite India’s request, China reiterates old ‘position’ on Masood Azhar

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A day after India urged China to take a call on Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM) chief Maulana Masood Azhar, Beijing said that it won’t change its position on the matter.
New Delhi had on Monday requested Beijing to support the call for declaring Azhar an international terrorist by the United Nations during a meeting between Home Minister Rajnath Singh and his visiting Chinese counterpart Zhao Kezhi in New Delhi.
Addressing a press conference on Tuesday, Chinese Foreign Ministry spokesperson Hua Chunying said, “As per to India’s request for the listing of Masood (Azhar) we already stated our position many times.”
Hua added that China has always been active in international anti-terrorist operations and will “continue to step up the security cooperation to uphold the regional peace and stability with parties”.
China, a veto-wielding permanent member of the UN Security Council, has repeatedly blocked India’s bid at the UN to list Azhar as a global terrorist.
Azhar is the mastermind of the deadly attack at an Indian Army base in 2016. He also plotted the 26/11 Mumbai attacks.
“We have always made our decisions and judgements on the merits of the matter itself,” Hua said.
The spokesperson also stressed that China has not given shelter to United Liberation Front of Assam (ULFA) leader Paresh Baruah stating that “the Chinese government has always adhered to the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries”.
Reports say that Baruah is making frequent visits to China and smuggles arms to India’s Northeast.
China on Tuesday said its first internal security cooperation agreement with India inked on Monday will provide the institutional guarantee to combat trans-border crimes.
Referring to the April informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping, Hua said, “We believe this cooperation on security and law enforcement will help us to combat crimes as it will provide more institutional and systematic guarantee on this”.
“We will continue to step up our cooperation in combating separatist forces, telecom fraud the drug crimes and other trans-border crimes. We will explore more areas for security and law enforcement cooperation and ensure the security of our personnel that carrying projects in each other’s countries,” she said.
Following the meeting and the signing of the agreement, Rajnath Singh had on Monday tweeted, “Had a fruitful meeting with the State Councillor and Minister of Public Security of China, Mr. Zhao Kezhi in New Delhi today. We discussed issues of mutual interest, including bilateral counter-terrorism cooperation.”
 

Had a fruitful meeting with the State Councilor and Minister of Public Security of China, Mr. Zhao Kezhi in New Delhi today. We discussed issues of mutual interest, including bilateral counter-terrorism cooperation. pic.twitter.com/oOOLvckhPy
— राजनाथ सिंह (@rajnathsingh) October 22, 2018

(With inputs from agencies.)

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