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Russian President Vladimir Putin backs PM Modi on terrorism

Describing terrorism as a global menace, Prime Minister Narendra Modi urged the world community on Friday to block funding, weapons and communication modes of terrorists, in an apparent reference to Pakistan’s support for Kashmiri militants.

“The call of time is that we should rise above specific incidents. Terrorism is the enemy of humankind. All should come together to fight terrorism,” Mr Modi said during a discussion at the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum (SPIEF). He shared the stage with Russian President Vladimir Putin and the leaders of Austria and Moldova.

Mr Modi, while noting that the UN Secretary General Antonio Guterres was present in the gathering, lamented that for 40 years, a resolution is pending before the United Nations regarding definition of terrorism and of those who help terrorists.

“Only lip service has been provided. There has been no discussion, nor any decision,” he said.

The Prime Minister said he was glad that Mr Putin had publicly said on Thursday that the resolution would be discussed.

In an oblique reference to Pakistan, Mr Modi said terrorists don’t manufacture weapons, but some countries supply guns to them. Similarly, terrorists don’t print currency, but some countries facilitate their financing through money laundering. Terrorists don’t own telecommunications system and social media networks, but some countries help them with that, he said.

“Now we should come out of good terrorism, bad terrorism (debate); my terrorist, your terrorist (syndrome). It is an issue of humankind. That’s how we can fight terrorism,” he said.

India, he said, has been a victim of cross-border terrorism for 40 years and thousands of innocent citizens have been killed, but the world recognised terrorism merely as a law and order problem for many years. Only after 9/11, the world woke up to know how deep terrorists can strike and how much havoc they can wreak, he said. He said terrorism has no boundaries and all countries should fight it collectively.

Mr Putin also said that India was facing a serious problem on account of terrorism and it was not an “imaginary thing”.  He agreed with Mr Modi that terrorism is a common threat and “that should unite us. We ought to understand what is happening and where it will lead us. We ought to be aware of the danger” of terrorism.

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