Terrorism Current Affairs

Government bans two affiliates of al Qaeda and IS under UAPA

The Ministry of Home Affairs (MHA) has banned al Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent (AQIS) and Islamic State in Khorasan Province (ISKP) under anti-terror law, Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967. AQIS is an affiliate of al Qaeda and ISKP is Afghanistan wing of Islamic State (IS).

Key Facts

al Qaeda in Indian Subcontinent (AQIS): It is terrorist organisation, which has committed acts of terrorism in India’s neighbouring countries. It has been promoting and encouraging terrorist acts on Indian interests in Indian sub-continent. It has been attempting radicalisation and recruitment of youth from India. It has been pushing several provocative messages on social media platforms. It was created in August 2014 and is led by an Indian, Maulana Asim Umar, who was later identified as Uttar Pradesh resident Sanaul Haq.

Islamic State in Khorasan Province (ISKP): It promotes and encourages terrorism in Indian sub-continent. It has been committing terrorist acts to consolidate its position by recruiting youth for global jihad and to achieve objective of establishing its own caliphate by overthrowing democratically elected governments. It considers India and Indian interests as its targets and is engaged in radicalising and recruiting Indian youth for terrorist activities. ISKP came into existence in 2015 and mainly comprises defectors from Tehrik-i-Taliban (TTP).

Unlawful Activities (Prevention) Act (UAPA), 1967

UAPA is anti-terrorist law aimed at effective prevention of unlawful activities associations in India. Its main objective is to make powers available for dealing with activities directed against integrity and sovereignty of India. It bans certain terrorist associations, punishes membership and association with such organizations and punishes terrorist activities. The law been legislated to impose reasonable restrictions in interests of sovereignty and integrity of India on exercise of freedom of speech and expression, to assemble peaceably without arms and to form associations.

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Qingdao declaration: SCO summit adopts declaration calling for 3-year plan to combat terrorism

The 18th Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) summit concluded with the adoption of the Qingdao declaration. It was adopted by leaders of China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan, India (represented by Prime Minister Narendra Modi) and Pakistan. It was India and Pakistan’s first summit as full members of SCO grouping.

Key Facts

The Qingdao declaration calls for implementing three-year plan to combat terrorism, separatism and extremism. It also calls for implementation of treaty on long-term good neighbourliness, friendship and co-operation. SCO participating leaders also adopted total of 17 documents at the summit, which particularly include documents endorsing 2018-2022 Action Plan to implement Treaty for Long-term Good-Neighborly Relations, Friendship and Cooperation between SCO states and 2019-2020 Program for Cooperation in countering terrorism, separatism and extremism. They also signed decision to approve 2018-2023 Anti-Drug Strategy and Action Plan to implement it. Besides, leaders of all SCO countries also signed an information statement.

India’s Participation

India refused to endorse China’s ambitious One Belt, One Road (OBOR) project as part of Qingdao Declaration at the 18th SCO summit. At the restricted session of the SCO Summit, Indian Prime Minister Modi floated concept of SECURE: ‘S’ for security for citizens, ‘E’ for economic development, ‘C’ for connectivity in the region, ‘U’ for unity, ‘R’ for respect of sovereignty and integrity, and ‘E for environment protection.

Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO)

SCO is a Eurasian economic, political and security organisation headquartered in Beijing, China. The Declaration on establishment of SCO was singed in Shanghai (China) in June 2001 by six founding states – Russia, China, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan and Uzbekistan.

The groupings main objective is military cooperation between members. It also works towards intelligence-sharing, counter-terrorism operations in Central Asia. It is primarily centred on its member nations’ Central Asian security-related concerns, often describing main threats it confronts as being terrorism, separatism and extremism.

The full members of the organization are China, Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan, India and Pakistan. India and Pakistan were granted SCO membership in June 2017. Afghanistan, Belarus, Iran and Mongolia currently enjoy observer status of SCO. Sri Lanka, Turkey, Azerbaijan, Armenia, Cambodia and Nepal are dialogue partners of SCO.

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