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Despite India having a strong law-based framework to control small arms and light weapons, security agencies here seize thousands of illegal possessions every year in the form of illegal smuggling from India’s borders. This is a clear indication that more effective efforts are needed for the implementation of the UN Program of Action (UNPOA).
This was stated by Sandeep Arya, Additional Secretary, Department of Disarmament and International Security Affairs, Ministry of External Affairs, India, while speaking at the 8th biennial meeting of countries on the Program of Action on Small Arms and Light Weapons (SALWs) on Monday. He said that India sees the full and effective implementation of UNPOA as a cornerstone of multilateral efforts to prevent, combat and eradicate trafficking in India.
We particularly emphasize the importance of UNPOA in reducing armed conflicts and tackling the menace of terrorism, one of the greatest challenges facing the world. Some of the recent technological advances have also led to a rise in illegal smuggling of small arms and light weapons, he said.
Concerns expressed in the UN on the latest cases in the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza
Speaking on the question of Palestine at the UN Security Council meeting, India’s Deputy Permanent Representative R Ravindra said that India is also closely monitoring the developments in Masafar Yetta and is concerned about the possible legal expulsion of Palestinian families. But the tension has increased. “We are deeply concerned by developments in the West Bank, Jerusalem and Gaza,” he said.
Violent attacks and civilian killings have resulted in the death of many Palestinian and Israeli people. He said that the acts of destruction and provocation are also going on. We have consistently condemned all acts of violence and reiterate our call for a complete end to violence. He said that all unilateral measures that unnecessarily change the status quo and dilute the viability of the two-state solution should be avoided.
“It is extremely important to send a strong signal to the international community and this Council against any move that precludes the prospect of lasting peace between Israel and Palestine,” he said. Ravindra said India has consistently called for direct peace talks between the two sides, which India considers the best path towards achieving the goal of a two-state solution.
“These negotiations must take place according to an internationally agreed framework, taking into account the legitimate aspirations of the Palestinian people for the country and the legitimate security concerns of Israel,” he said. Israel and the Palestinians are paying a heavy price for not having direct talks on key political issues. This does not bode well for long-term peace in the region.
India expresses concern over lack of constitutional agreement for elections in Libya
India has said that it is regrettable that there is still no agreement on constitutional basis for holding elections in Libya. It is to ensure that elections are held at the earliest in a free, fair, inclusive and credible manner. Adviser in India’s Permanent Mission to the United Nations R. Madhusudan told the Security Council briefing and consultation on Libya that India is concerned that the progress seen after the signing of the ceasefire agreement is not only at risk of stalling but also at risk of falling behind.
Madhusudan said it is also important that it focus its attention on the threat of terrorism in Africa, particularly in the Sahel region. He said reports from the Secretary General and the panel of experts have highlighted the presence of training camps for ISIL and its allies in southern Libya.