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No Money For Terror

New Delhi: Union Home Minister Amit Shah said that terrorism, today, has taken such a formidable form, that its effects are visible at every level. He said that “Terrorism is the biggest enemy of democracy, human rights, economic progress, and world peace, which we cannot allow to succeed”.

Shri Shah said that no country or organization can successfully combat terrorism, alone. The international community must continue to fight shoulder-to-shoulder against this increasingly complex and borderless threat.

Shri Shah delivered concluding remarks at the closing session of 3rd “No Money For Terror” Conference (Counter-Terrorism Financing) in New Delhi today.

Union Home Minister said that in the last few decades, India has successfully tackled many challenges, including terrorism. He maintained that with India’s policy of Zero Tolerance against Terrorism, a strong framework of counter-terror laws, and empowerment of agencies, India has seen a significant reduction in incidences of terrorism and has succeeded in ensuring strict punishment in the cases of terrorism.

Shri Shah said that forensic science is being promoted with the aim of equipping the investigation with science and technology and, in this direction, with the vision of Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi, the world’s first National Forensic Science University has been established.

Shri Shah said that the Government of India has also decided to develop national and global databases on crimes such as terrorism, narcotics, and economic offenses. He said that in order to combat cybercrime in a comprehensive manner, the Government of India has established the Indian Cybercrime Coordination Center. Union Home Minister reiterated Prime Minister Shri Narendra Modi’s resolve that India will be the focal point of international cooperation for “Counter-Terrorism (CT) and Combating Financing of Terrorism (CFT)”.

Shri Shah said that we cannot think of a fear-free society, a fear-free world without an effective, long-term, concerted fight against all forms of terrorism. The citizens of our nations have entrusted a bigger responsibility of their protection to the leadership, and it is our duty to live up to this responsibility. He said that over the past two decades, the United Nations Security Council has developed a framework to deal with this threat, with the main objective of creating a “counter-terrorism sanctions regime”. He said that this system established by the United Nations has successfully curbed to some extent, the actions of countries that make terrorism a state-funded enterprise, but it has to be further strengthened, made more rigorous, and transparent.

Union Home Minister said that our first commitment should be cooperation with transparency and all countries and organizations must pledge complete transparency in sharing intelligence in a better and more effective manner. He said that we have to fight this war against terrorism and terrorist groups, in every geographical space, in every virtual space. Shri Shah said that there have been many instances when, under the guise of other motives, some organizations promote terrorism and radicalization at the national and international levels. He noted that it has also been found that these organizations tend to become the medium of financing terrorism. Shri Shah said that recently, the Government of India has banned an organization that conspired to radicalize the youth and push them towards terrorism and that every country should identify and take stringent action against such organisations.

Shri Shah said that some countries, their governments and their agencies have made ‘Terrorism’ their State Policy. He said that in these Terror havens, it is necessary to shackle their unrestrained activities along with a strict economic crackdown and all the countries of the world will have to make up their minds on this, rising above their geo-political interests. Shri Shah said that we observe that some countries repeatedly support terrorists and those who harbour terrorism, but, terrorism has no international boundaries, so all countries should think beyond politics and cooperate with each other. He said that at the same time, all countries will have to agree on one common definition of ‘terrorism’ and ‘terror financing’, because it is an issue of the protection of our citizens, and their human and democratic rights, it should not become a political issue.

Union Home Minister said that terrorists understand information technology and cyberspace very well and they also understand the sensitivity of the public and tend to exploit them. He said that cyberspace today has become a major battleground in the fight against terrorism. Shri Shah said that there have also been multiple changes in Weapons Technology too and these 21st-century lethal technologies and drone technologies are also accessible to terrorists now. He said that the growing links of terrorism with organized crimes such as narcotics, crypto-currency, and hawala, have increased the possibility of terror financing manifold.

Shri Shah said that the primary goal of this conference is to identify various channels and ideate a practical and workable roadmap against terror financing, identifying its various channels. He stated that according to an estimate by the IMF and the World Bank, criminals around the world launder around 2 to 4 trillion dollars every year. And a major part of it goes to fuel terrorism. Shri Shah said that considering the quantum and challenges, the agencies and authorities working in the areas of counter-terror and terror financing, have to adopt a long-term strategy. Shri Shah drew the attention of the delegates towards some priority issues,