PM Modi at East Asia Summit: Reject any linkage between religion and terror

Addressing 17 other Heads of State at the ongoing East Asia Summit in Myanmar, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said – My Government moved with a great sense of priority and speed to turn our ‘Look East Policy’ into ‘Act East Policy’. He further added that no other forum is so critical for peace, stability and prosperity in Asia-Pacific and the world. At a time when dispute in the South China Sea is escalating, the Prime Minister underlined his concerns by saying, “In a world of inter-dependence and globalization, there is no option but to follow international laws and norms. Following international law and norms is important for peace and stability in South China Sea as well.”

He also made a clear reference to increasing cyber-spying among some countries as well as lethal hacking by non-state operators. As per the English rendering of PM’s remarks at Nay Pyi Taw, PM said, “Have to ensure that cyber and space remain a source of connectivity and prosperity, not new theaters for conflict.”

Rising terror threats to the world and especially in the Asian continent has been a universally growing concern. All this at a time, when there is high possibilities of Asia becoming the global economic hub. The rise of ISIS in the Middle-East and establishment of Islamic State which has gone about ruthlessly killing people and carrying out ethnic cleansing The Al-Qaeda has also set out on its mission to set up a wing for South Asia, especially the Indian sub-continent. Without mincing words, PM Modi said, “Challenges of terrorism and extremism have increased. We support the East Asia Summit Declaration on the Islamic State” He further added that, “Comprehensive response against terrorism requires a genuinely international partnership against all terrorism. We should also reject any linkage between religion and terrorism.”

The final statement that religion and terror should not be linked is probably the boldest statement on international terror, ever made by a head of State in the recent past. World leaders have been referring to international terror groups with the concept of Islamic terrorism. It probably needed a strong leader to initiate changes in the global understanding of terror dynamics. This also reflected upon India’s maturity to understand politics of terror and address it with relevant sensitivity. The world surely had a glimpse of a leader whose thought and word match his action.

Courtesy Niti Central

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