China prevents UN blacklisting of leader behind Kashmir attack

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France, US and United Kingdom had proposed the listing of Azhar as an global terrorist and if no country raises any issue by March 13, Azhar will be put on the UN terror list. In January 2017, China once again placed a technical hold on the proposal which was moved by the UK, USA and France.

On Wednesday, China was the only Security Council member to oppose the proposal spearheaded with renewed vigour by France with British and United States backing at the al-Qaeda sanctions committee to declare him a global terrorist and impose sanctions on him. But due to China's veto, India hasn't been able to ban Masood Azhar. This is the fourth time China has blocked such a bid in the committee.

Azhar founded JeM in 2000 after a hostage exchange that freed him from an Indian prison in return for 155 people held on a hijacked aircraft. She had said at the trilateral meeting with Russian and Chinese foreign ministers that Pakistan's inaction on JeM had triggered the airstrikes.

India has also accused JeM of masterminding an attack on its Pathankot airbase on the Pakistan border, which killed three members of the security forces.

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On Monday, India's foreign secretary Vijay Gokhale met USA secretary of state Mike Pompeo to press the terror issue.

China's move to block a fresh attempt by the United Nations Security Council to designate the chief of Jaish-e-Mohammed as a global terrorist has intensified pressure on the tense relationship between New Delhi and Beijing.

About these efforts, Palladino said: "The US and India work closely together on counter-terrorism efforts, and that includes at the United Nations".

India on February 26 had sent a dossier to Pakistan with specific details pertaining to JeM's role in the dastardly Pulwama attacks.

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While the possibility of a worsening military stand-off between the nuclear-armed neighbors reduced in recent weeks, India has continued to press for action against Masood Azhar, the group's chief.

The fate of the proposal to designate Pakistan-based Azhar as a global terrorist by the UN Security Council will be known in less than 24 hours when the deadline to raise objections to the bid expires.

The Chinese support to Pakistan has been attributed to a host of reasons such as China and Pakistan being "all-weather friends" to Pakistan's support for China within groupings like the Organisation of Islamic Cooperation (OIC) and others like the Non-Aligned Movement where China has no representation. The construction of the $46 billion China-Pakistan Economic Corridor (CPEC) has further strengthened the ties between the two nations. This gives China the power to quash the resolution. Even the global support for India post the Pulwama attack as well as its strike on Balakot; couldn't tilt the balance this time.

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