Prime Minister Manmohan Singh addressing the 68th session of the United Nations General Assembly in New York yesterday.
United Nations: Reass-erting that Pakistan was the epicentre of terrorism, Prime Minister Manmohan Singh yesterday said that India was ready to resolve all issues with it through dialogue provided it shuts down terrorist machinery there.
“State-sponsored cross-border terrorism is of particular concern to India on account of the fact that the epicentre of terrorism in our region is located in our neighbourhood in Pakistan,” said the Indian leader addressing the UN general assembly.
Noting that his Pakistani counterpart Nawaz Sharif speaking at the same forum had spoken of “making a new beginning”, Manmohan Singh said he reciprocated the Pakistani leader’s sentiments, and looked forward to meeting him today.
“India is committed sincerely to resolving all issues with Pakistan, including the issue of Jammu and Kashmir, through bilateral dialogue on the basis of the Simla Agreement,” he said.
“However, for progress to be made, it is imperative that the territory of Pakistan and the areas under its control are not utilised for aiding and abetting terrorism directed against India,” Manmohan Singh said.
“It is equally important that the terrorist machinery that draws its sustenance from Pakistan be shut down,” he said a day after voicing concerns about terrorism emanating from Pakistan at his summit with US President Barack Obama on Friday.
He had also told Obama that the expectations from his upcoming meeting with Sharif “have to be toned down given the terror arm which is still active in our subcontinent” and terrorists’ presence “still remain focused in Pakistan”.
On Kashmir issue too, he also asked Sharif to have a “clear understanding of the fact Jammu and Kashmir is an integral part of India and that there can never, ever, be a compromise with the unity and territorial integrity of India”.
He called on the world community “to renew commitment, especially here at the UN, for concerted, cohesive and continuing global action against terrorism”. “There can be no tolerance for states sheltering, arming, training or financing terrorists. Nor can they absolve themselves of the responsibility to prevent their territories from being used to launch acts of terrorism,” Manmohan Singh said in another stern warning to Pakistan.
“The increasingly complex challenges to international peace and security require a new international consensus to be built, whether it is in cyber security, non-proliferation or terrorism,” he said.
Meanwhile, the Prime Minister made a strong pitch for reforms in the UN Security Council saying these should reflect current realities. “The UN Security Council must be reformed and restructured to reflect current political realities,” Manmohan Singh said. “More developing countries should be included as both permanent and non-permanent members,” he said.
The prime minister also said that multilateral financial institutions should also enable an enhanced voice for developing countries in their decision making structures. “Multilateral efforts must guide our quest for peace and security, wherever they are threatened. And the centrality and contribution of the UN system to development must be restored,” he said. IANS