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Nobody can tolerate terrorism: Vice President Hamid Ansari on Uri attack

Asserting that nobody can tolerate terrorism, Vice President Hamid Ansari on Monday said the attack in Uri is totally unacceptable and these kinds of "tactics" will eventually lead to a lot of "unpleasantness".

"It's the view of everybody in the country and that is my view also that this (attack in Uri) is totally unacceptable, totally condemnable and these kind of tactics will eventually lead to a lot of unpleasantness. What action the government of India takes you will hear about it from the government of India," Ansari told reporters while on his way back from Venezuela after attending the 17th NAM Summit.

 Nobody can tolerate terrorism: Vice President Hamid Ansari on Uri attack

Hamid Ansari. Reuters

Asked with terror attacks continuing unabated was India's restraint being tested, he said, "Well I don't know whether the term restraint is there. If one is attacked, we shall respond in our own judgement and the manner of response is something that is left to the concerned authorities of the state but there is no question of restraint or tolerance. Nobody can tolerate terrorism."

He said anybody can be a victim of terror and the whole issue is that innocent civilians are being targeted. "So tomorrow, any one of us can be the victims of terror".

Earlier, condemning the Uri attack in a statement the Vice President had said, such attacks are the result of the use of cross–border terrorism by "one particular country" in the region and India would deal with such provocations in a "befitting manner".

Heavily-armed militants stormed a battalion headquarters of the Indian Army in North Kashmir's Uri town in the wee hours on Sunday, killing 17 jawans and injuring 19 other personnel in the attack in which all four terrorists were neutralised.

It was the worst attack on the Indian Army in many years.

Talking about India's strategy at the UN General Assembly session, Ansari said, "It has been a part of our general approach that the question of terrorism has to be flagged on all forums."

"I am not privy to what the External Affairs Minister is going to say, I have not seen the text but I am sure that this is a subject that will figure very prominently in her statement to the general assembly. And of course there will can anticipate some form of a vicious attack from the other side, there will be rights of reply, the usual pattern which goes on in the general assembly debates," he said.

External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj will address the General Debate on 26 September.

On India's strong protest lodged with NAM over Pakistan’s support to terrorism, Ansari said, "something was said by one delegation which was contrary to the practice of NAM and specifically objectionable to us".

He said since NAM does not have a practice of rights of reply, it was thought at best to register India's position in a formal communication for which Minister of State for External Affairs MJ Akbar has addressed the chairman of the conference.

Talking about the NAM summit, Ansari said that as founders of the movement it was a matter of some satisfaction for India that the great majority of countries in the world have found NAM of relevance even today.

"Yes there was a different agenda in 1961, the core of the agenda remains the same. But the world has changed and the agenda for the next three years has also been spelt out. The goals do not anywhere conflict with the core agenda of NAM as it was spelt out in 1961. So it is reflective of a very genuine matter of interest and concern," he said.

"The point that we made and made it quite emphatically was that the core issue is sustainable development and no development is possible unless there are conditions of peace in societies, that is one. Secondly, development is to be made by the autonomous decision of each country. I cannot dictate to another country, nor can another country cannot dictate to me," he asserted.

Ansari said the three points of the theme of the conference — form a kind of triad in which the essential requirement for development is security and sovereignty.

"In that context we raised the question both in my intervention and in my meeting with the chairman of the conference about the concern that is being expressed worldwide and the concern being expressed by us repeatedly about what terrorism is doing to the world. And if you read the final document you will see that the three longest sub items in itare terrorism, another is sustainable development goals and the third is what the situation in what the world calls Middle East, we call West Asia," the vice president said.

"So I think the centrality of terrorism as an impediment to development has been well flagged and when I met the chairman of the conference the President of Venezuela (Nocolas Maduro), he took that point really well and some of the language that was used in the bilateral meeting has found its way into the final document," he said.

Asked about a paragraph in the Margarita Declaration of the NAM summit about unilateral sanctions on which NAM has spoken off, Ansari said, "There is a mechanism which is admissible in international practice of sanctions coming through the security council because that reflects the generality of opinion of the international community. Now unilateral sanctions over and above that we have seen they are not very productive, they are indiscriminate."

Ansari also said the his bilateral meetings with President Maduro, Iranian President Hassan Rouhani, Cuban president Raul Castro and Nepalese Vice President Nanda Kishor Pun went really well.

He said in his meeting with President Rouhani , the point was emphasised that India and Iran being neighbouring countries having common interest in peace, security and development are opening a new chapter of cooperation – both economic cooperation and cooperation to make sure that regional security is adequately addressed.

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Updated Date: Sep 19, 2016 14:08:03 IST