Taliban's rise to power poses complex security threat: India at UN

Photo: AP

New York: The Taliban's rise to power in Afghanistan poses a complex security threat outside the region, particularly in parts of Africa, India's Permanent Representative to the UN said on Monday.

Delivering his opening remark as chair of the Counter-Terrorism Committee, Ambassador T.S. Tirumurti said the latter half of 2021 saw consequential change in Afghanistan with the Taliban takeover of Kabul in August.

"The recent 1988 Committee report to the Security Council noted that the ties between the Taliban, largely through the Haqqani Network, and the Al-Qaida and foreign terrorist fighters remain close and are based on ideological alignment and relationships forged through common struggle and intermarriage," he said the during the open briefing of the Counter-Terrorism Committee.

The Indian envoy said the linkages between the Taliban, Al-Qaida, and terrorist entities proscribed by the Security Council, such as Lashkar e-Tayyiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, are a further source of concern.

According to Tirumurti, serious concern remains that Afghanistan may become a safe haven for Al Qaida and a number of terrorist groups in the region.

"The Taliban's rise to power in Afghanistan also poses a complex security threat outside the region, particularly in parts of Africa, where terrorist groups may try to emulate the Taliban's example," he said.

Since their military defeat in the conflict zones of the Middle East, ISIL and Al-Qaida have been seeking to establish a foothold in both South and South-East Asia, the diplomat added.

He also underlined the threat posed by the misuse of information and communications technologies (ICT) including new technologies such as artificial intelligence (AI), robotics, deep fakes, and Blockchain -- for terrorist purposes is on the increase.

"Use of drones for cross-border trafficking of arms, drugs and launching terror attacks have also remained an issue of serious concern," the Indian ambassador added.

During his speech, he recalled developments in South and South-East Asia, including the terrorist attack in 2019 in Sri Lanka and the terror attack on Jammu-Srinagar Highway in 2019 in which 40 Indian security personnel were killed.

He also welcomed the open briefing of the Counter-Terrorism Committee on "The work of the Counter-Terrorism Committee Executive Directorate with the Member States of South and South-East Asia pursuant to Security Council resolution 2395 (2017)". (ANI)

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