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U.S warns China for blocking action on terrorist Masood Azhar

March 15, 2019

The United States has issued a stern warning to China for blocking yet another attempt to blacklist Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar on the grounds that he is a global terrorist.

A U. S diplomat at the United Nations Security Council warned that members "may be forced to pursue other actions". In an unusually tough message, he said Beijing "should not protect terrorists from Pakistan or any other country" if it is serious about combatting terrorism.

The remarks came after China put a hold on a proposal moved by the US, United Kingdom and France to designate Masood Azhar as a "global terrorist" under the Al Qaeda Sanctions Committee of the Security Council. Beijing did not give a reason. No reason was given by China for blocking the move.

In a statement, the U.S said,

This is the fourth time that China has placed a hold on this listing. China should not prevent the Committee from doing the job the Security Council has entrusted it to do. If China continues to block this designation, responsible member states may be forced to pursue other actions at the Security Council. It shouldn't have to come to that. - United States government

India is disappointed after the Chinese move, and vowed to continue to pursue "all available avenues to ensure that terrorist leaders who are involved in heinous attacks on our citizens" are brought to justice. It also thanked the countries who had supported India's bid to designate Azhar as a terrorist.

A large number of countries had backed the proposal against Azhar. This will mean a ban on travel and arms.

China which has the power to veto has blocked such attempts three times in the past. The last time was in 2016, months after the Jaish attack on the Pathankot air base.

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