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EDITORIAL ANALYSIS: No consensus’ is derailing counter-terror diplomacy

Source: The Hindu, UN

  • Prelims:Current events of international importance(UNSC, CTC, NMFT, FATF etc)

 

  • Mains GS Paper II:Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate etc

 

ARTICLE HIGHLIGHTS

  • India hosted the special session of the United Nations Security Council’s Counter-Terrorism Committee (UNSC-CTC) last month.
    • It focused on new and emerging technologies.
  • Other important events:
    • India will host the third editionof the “No Money For Terror” (NMFT)
    • UNSC special briefing on challenges to global counter-terrorism efforts

 

INSIGHTS ON THE ISSUE

Context

United Nations Security Council(UNSC):

  • The Security Council was established by the UN Charter in 1945.
  • It is one of the six principal organs of the United Nations.
  • Its primary responsibility is to work to maintain international peace and security.
  • The council is headquartered at NewYork.
  • The council has 15 members:
    • Five(5)permanent members
    • Ten(10) non-permanent members elected for two-year terms
  • Each year, the General Assembly elects five non-permanent members(out of ten in total) for a two-year term.
  • The ten non-permanent seats are distributed on a regional basis.
  • The council’s presidency is a capacity that rotates every monthamong its 15 members.
  • Permanent members: United States, the Russian Federation, France, China and the United Kingdom

 

UNSC- Counter-Terrorism Committee:(Delhi Declaration):

  • Adopted the Delhi Declarationon countering the use of new and emerging technologies for terrorist purposes.
  • Three themes: Continue working on recommendations on the three themes of the Special meeting.
    • Terrorism financing
    • Cyberthreats
    • Use of drones
  • Non-binding principles: Develop a set of non-binding guiding principles to assist Member States to counter the threat posed by the use of new and emerging technologies for terrorist purposes.

Aim:

  • Cover the main concerns surrounding the abuse of drones, social media platforms, and crowdfunding
  • Create guidelinesthat will help to tackle the growing issue.

 

What are the present challenges around terrorism?

  • Global War On Terrorism” (GWOT): It was built on an unequal campaign.
    • Examples:
      • The IC-814 hijacking (1999)less than two years prior to the 9/11 attacks, India was forced to release all terrorists.
      • Pakistan’s role as the U.S.’s ally, and China’s “close friend: It ensured that the UNSC designations of Pakistan based terrorists, were never mentioned
    • Weak international reaction to the Taliban’s takeover of Kabul: It demonstrates rising fatigue levels in dealing with “another country’s problems”.
    • Growing global polarization over the Russia-Ukraine war: It is shifting the focus from terrorism and is also blurring the lines on what constitutes terrorism.

 

Challenges for UNSC:

  • Resolutions: Unable to pass any meaningful resolutions that are not vetoed by Russia or western members
  • China has been able to block as many as five terror designations requested by India and the U.S
  • Very little progress: on the actual issues such as the definition of terrorism, concerns over human rights law conflicts, and the old debate on ‘freedom fighter vs terrorist

 

Challenges around modern technologies:

 

 

 

Way Forward

  • Outdated and toothless: The hard reality for India is that the future of counter-terrorism cooperation is going to be less cooperative, and counter-terror regimes such as the UNSC Resolutions 1267, 1373, rendered outdated and toothless
  • Global consensus: There is global consensus on regulating the use of these emergent technologies by all responsible states, otherwise it will be hard to distinguish their use from those by designated terror entities, or state-sponsored terrorism
  • Globally accepted norms on how and in what measure one is to respond to attacks
    • Whether it is the U.S.’s flattening of Afghanistan post-9/11, Pakistan’s aerial strikes on its own populations in Swat and Balochistan
  • What constitutes terrorism: Without some consensus on what constitutes terror, no war on terrorism can be truly global.
  • Leading globally: India, as host of counter-terrorism events, and of the SCO and the next G-20, must stop fighting the “last war” on terrorism, and steer the global narrative towards preparing for the next ones.

 

 

QUESTION FOR PRACTICE

  1. What are the different elements of cyber security ? Keeping in view the challenges in cyber security, examine the extent to which India has successfully developed a comprehensive National Cyber Security Strategy.(UPSC 2022)

(200 WORDS, 10 MARKS)