Manama: India and Bahrain denounced terrorism calling it a "hazard" to all countries and said terrorist in one country cannot be glorified as a freedom fighter by another, an apparent reference to Pakistan's praise for Hizbul Mujahideen militant Burhan Wani.
A joint statement, issued after Home Minister Rajnath Singh held talks with and Bahrain Interior Minister Shaikh Rashid bin Abdullah Al Khalifa, said both the countries agreed on their strong stances against all forms of terrorism, saying "terrorism is a hazard to all countries and communities".
Rashid said Bahrain is looking forward to working with India in the fight against terrorism and in strengthening the mutual and regional security.
"India and Bahrain reject the linking of terrorism to any race, religion or culture. Both the countries agreed that a terrorist in one country cannot be glorified as a freedom fighter by another, and the two sides called upon all states to reject the use of terrorism against other countries, to refrain from interfering in the internal affairs of the state, and to fight terrorist infrastructure whenever it exists," it said.
The joint statement was issued a day after Singh told Bahrain's top leadership that Pakistan's use of terrorism as "an instrument of state policy" was a matter of concern and the incitement from across the border was the main reason behind the current unrest in Jammu and Kashmir.
The Home Minister, who is on a three-day visit to the Gulf country, on Monday also apprised Rashid about Islamabad's open support and participation to glorify slain Hizbul Mujahideen militant Wani, saying it indicates continued free movement that terrorists and their supporters enjoy in Pakistan.
Bahrain is a key member of the Organisation of the Islamic Conference in which Pakistan is also a member.
The joint statement said the two sides agreed to actively implement the counter-terrorism agreement for which a joint committee was formed that held its first meeting on the sidelines of the visit.
India and Bahrain decided to hold regular committee meetings, in accordance to the clauses of the agreement.
The two sides also agreed to reinforce cooperation in exchange of information on ongoing terrorism-related investigations, exchange of information of ongoing organised crime investigations, including terrorism and drug trafficking, determine and exchange information on terrorism financing and organised crime sources and confiscation of terrorism money in accordance to the laws of both countries.
They resolved to study youth extremism and the use of the internet and how to tackle the issue, further cooperation in e-security and fight money laundering.
New Delhi and Manama agreed to promote participation in training courses and seminars that are held by the two countries for security officials to exchange expertise on crime fighting and other unconventional threats.
The two sides welcomed cooperation in anti-human trafficking and the fight against emerging security threats of the two countries. The two sides agreed to continue high level communication to reinforce security cooperation.
The Home Minister expressed thanks and appreciation to the Bahrain Interior Minister, hailing the historical ties between the two friendly countries that are based on love and peace.
Singh said Bahrain is a civilised and open society that promotes unity and co-existence and mutual visits will develop bilateral ties.
He said terrorism is a threat to the whole world and that India is ready to reinforce joint counter-terrorism cooperation with Bahrain.
Rashid hailed the first meeting of the Bahraini-Indian Joint Steering Committee as part of the agreement signed between the two sides on counter-terrorism to reinforce security cooperation, especially regional terrorism issues, a statement said.
He highlighted that Bahrain has experienced terrorist acts that caused loss of life and horrific injuries and damage to infrastructure.
The Bahrain Interior Minister said, "We look forward to working together in the fight against terrorism and in strengthening our mutual and regional security."
He said the Joint Steering Committee should look at how "we can work together to address challenges and to follow up the progress of the agreed decision through exchange of visits and expertise and working to achieve common goals".
The two sides agreed that the historical visit of the King of Bahrain to India in February 2014 built a basic foundation toward a strong partnership between the two countries, as well as the creation of opportunities to develop bilateral relations in various sectors.
The two sides also agreed that the exchange of high level visits has contributed to the implementation of important agreements between the two countries.
They discussed the visit of the Bahrain Interior Minister to India in December, 2015, that included the signing of the cooperation agreement on international counter-terrorism and trafficking of narcotics, psychotropic substances and chemical precursors.
Rashid said that Bahrain has throughout history been a link between East and West and the country has a special relationship with India due to the large Indian community in the Kingdom. He said Bahrain is a tolerant, peaceful and open country.
Rashid also invited Singh to visit temples and community centres that reflect the diversity of the Bahraini society. He said Bahrainis and Indians have lived together for generations and encouraged additional development in the ties between the two governments.
The Home Minister also called on Bahrain King Hamad bin Isa bin Salman Al Khalifa and Crown Prince Salman bin Hamad Al Khalifa and shared with them India's concern over terrorism.
Updated Date: Oct 25, 2016 15:34 PM