China Noncommittal On Masood Azhar

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GOA : China seems to be Noncommital On Masood Azhar.  Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping held talks on Saturday in Goa – where India is hosting a BRICS Summit – and agreed that terror was a scourge for the region . PM Modi told President Xi that no country is immune to terror and it is an issue on which “we cannot afford to have differences”. While President Xi agreed on jointly fighting terror, China’s refusal to point fingers at all-weather friend Pakistan remains . President Xi, Russian President Putin and other leaders are attending the meeting of BRICS or Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa, set up in 2011 to make emerging economies a global force. India is pushing for BRICS members to agree on a strongly-worded summit declaration on terrorism highlighting “isolating countries that provide shelter to terror groups and help in arming these groups.” The challenge will be China, which, sources said, is open to a strong statement on terrorism, but would not like to cast Beijing’s alliance with Pakistan into doubt. PM Modi raised China blocking India’s calls for the United Nations to designate Masood Azhar, the Pakistan-based leader of the terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed group, as a terrorist. “We are maintaining dialogue with China (on Azhar), we expect China will see logic in it,” Foreign Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup told reporters. China was also noncommittal on India’s membership of the Nuclear Suppliers Group, a club of nuclear-trading nations. “The PM said we look forward to working with China to realise India’s membership. President Xi said a second round of talks (on NSG) will be held very soon and this would be helpful,” said Mr Swarup. Earlier today, a joint statement after PM Modi’s meeting with Russian President Putin “noted the commonality of positions of both the countries on such issues as war on terrorism. Indian side expressed its appreciation for Russia’s unequivocal condemnation of the terrorist attack on army base in Uri.” PM Modi said, “An old friend is better than two new friends.” He said President Putin and he agreed that there must be zero tolerance for terrorism. India and Russia signed 16 agreements including Rs. 39,000 crore defence deal to procure Moscow’s most advanced anti-aircraft defence system, the S-400 Triumph, and a deal to make Kamov helicopters in India.