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Listing of Masood Azhar on UN sanctions Committee agreed after political references: FO

ISLAMABAD: Foreign Office Spokesperson Dr Mohammad Faisal on Wednesday said listing of Maulana Masood Azhar on UN sanctions Committee had been agreed after all political references, including removing of attempts to link it with Pulwama incident and maligning Kashmiris struggle for their right to self-determination, ARY News reported.

“The UN Security Council (UNSC) 1267 Committee listed Maulana Masood Azhar today. This entails a ban on foreign travel, asset freeze and arms embargo,” Dr Mohammad Faisal said while talking to media in Islamabad.

He said the listing of Maulana Masood Azhar had been under consideration in the Sanctions Committee for several years, (since 2009). He had been proscribed under Pakistan’s Anti-Terrorism Act for some time, even before his case for listing was taken up by the Sanctions Committee, he said.

The UNSC 1267 Sanctions Committee listing was governed by clear rules and was based on strict technical criteria, he said.

The Foreign Office spokesperson said, all decisions of the Committee were taken through consensus. “The Committee procedures allow members to place technical holds to provide additional time for further discussions to reach a common understanding on matters under its consideration. Many members have placed technical holds on various listing proposals,” he said.

Read More: India removes Maulana Masood Azhar’s name from Pulwama attack case

He said Pakistan had always advocated the need for respecting these technical rules and regulations and had opposed the politicization of the Sanctions Committee. However, the earlier proposals to list Masood Azhar failed to generate the requisite consensus in the Sanctions Committee as the information did not meet its technical criteria, he said.

Dr Mohammad Faisal these proposals were aimed at maligning Pakistan and the legitimate struggle of the people of Indian occupied Jammu and Kashmiri for the realization of the right to self-determination and were thus rejected by Pakistan, which had always maintained that resolution of any listing issue should be by consensus, through objective dialogue and consultations, within the 1267 Committee framework and most importantly without politicization.

“Over the last few years, many states, including Pakistan have been concerned at an increasing trend of politicization of this Committee, including attempts to include matters that are unrelated to the technical criteria,” he said.

He said in this case as well, Pakistan witnessed politically motivated attempts manifested through calculated leaks, particularly in the Indian media, about matters under discussion in the Committee, which were strictly confidential.

The current listing proposal had been agreed after all political references, including removal of attempts to link it with Pulwama and maligning the legitimate struggle of the Kashmiris in IOK for realization of the right to self-determination, he said.

The spokesman said Pakistan maintained that terrorism was a menace to the world. This included the Indian state sponsored terrorism against innocent Kashmiris in IOK, including the inhuman use of pellet guns and human shields which found no parallel in the civilized world.

“Indian occupation forces continue to massacre Kashmiris enjoying judicial immunity with impunity through draconian laws. We will continue to provide diplomatic, political and moral support to our Kashmiri brethren,” he said

The Indian media’s attempts to build a narrative claiming it as a ‘victory’ for India and validation of its stance were thus absolutely false and baseless, he said.

“Our position is in line with the statements of Prime Minister Khan who clearly stated that there is no space for any proscribed organization or its affiliates to operate from Pakistani territory, our resolve for countering terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and our National Action Plan,” he said.

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