In a veiled reference to Pakistan, India and Australia on Thursday condemned the use of “terrorist proxies” for cross-border terrorism, and called for concerted action against all terror networks. The issue figured prominently at a virtual meeting of the India-Australia joint working group on counter-terrorism.
“India and Australia strongly condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and emphasised the need for strengthening international cooperation to combat terrorism in a comprehensive and sustained manner. Both sides condemned the use of terrorist proxies for cross-border terrorism,” a joint statement issued after the meeting said.
It said both sides underlined their commitment to coordinate and collaborate to counter terrorism in sync with the comprehensive strategic partnership established by Prime Minister Narendra Modi and his Australian counterpart Scott Morrison at their virtual summit in June.
“The two sides reviewed threats posed by UN-sanctioned terrorist entities and emphasised the need for concerted action against all terrorist networks,” the statement said, adding that views were exchanged on proscription of terrorists and entities as a tool to combat terrorism.
“Australia reiterated its condemnation of terrorist attacks in India, including 26/11 Mumbai, Pathankot and Pulwama and reiterated its support for the people and the government of India in the fight against terrorism,” it said.
The two sides underlined the urgent need for all countries to take immediate, sustained, verifiable and irreversible action to ensure that no territory under their control is used for terrorist attacks and to expeditiously bring to justice the perpetrators of such attacks, the statement said. Both sides also exchanged views on various areas of cooperation in the sphere of counter-terrorism including confronting radicalisation and violent extremism, combating financing of terrorism and ways to enhance information sharing.
They also discussed counter-terror cooperation in multilateral forums such as the United Nations, G20, Global Counterterrorism Forum, ASEAN Regional Forum and Financial Action Task Force. The Indian side was led by Mahaveer Singhvi, Joint Secretary for Counter Terrorism in the Ministry of External Affairs while the Australian delegation was headed by Tony Sheehan, Deputy Secretary of International Security, Humanitarian and Consular Group in the Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade of Australia.