External Affairs

Criticised by Narendra Modi, UN Defends Stance Against Terror

Narendra Modi speaking at the United Nations General Assembly. Credit: UN News Centre

Narendra Modi speaking at the United Nations General Assembly. Credit: UN News Centre

United Nations: In the wake of criticisms made by Prime Minister Narendra Modi about its stance against terrorism, the UN has defended itself.

“We certainly are trying to take a responsible attitude in terms of dealing with terrorism and the spectre of terrorism worldwide… The UN encourages international solidarity against terrorism in all its aspects, whether it is terrorist bombings or terrorist financing,” Deputy Spokesman for Secretary-General Ban Ki-Moon, Farhan Haq, told PTI.

Modi sharply criticised the UN when on his visit to Brussels on March 30, a week after two IS-led terror attacks hit the Zaventem international airport and the Maelbrook subway station, leaving over 30 dead and dozens injured.

Addressing a gathering of the Indian diaspora in Brussels, Modi said that the UN has all the means and mechanisms to deal with war but does not know what the definition of terrorism is and how to address it.

He also warned that the UN will become irrelevant if it does not come up with an appropriate response to deal with the scourge.

“I don’t know when the UN will do so and how it will do so but given the emerging situation, if solutions are not found to this problem, then it does not take time for an institution to become irrelevant,” he said.

He pointed out that India has been pleading with the UN for years to define “terrorism,” “terrorist” and the “accomplices” of terror.

Responding to Modi’s comments, Haq said that in the next few days, the UN will hold a meeting in Geneva on the need to prevent and to counter violent extremism. “And the Secretary-General will be speaking at that – in terms of the specific measures we’ve been talking about, in terms of handling violent extremism and its spread throughout the world,” he said.

(With PTI inputs)