India, Rwanda, Uganda call for ending terror sanctuaries

RSTV Bureau
Vice President Hamid Ansari interacts with media on board his special flight while returning back from  Rwanda and Uganda visit on Friday.

Vice President Hamid Ansari interacts with media on board his special flight while returning back from Rwanda and Uganda visit on Friday.

Underlining their shared concern on the menace of “cross-border terrorism”, India, Rwanda and Uganda have condemned it and said “resolute and credible steps” must be taken to eliminate safe havens and terror sanctuaries.

“Our co-operation with African countries is well-appreciated and well-known… And, on the phenomenon of terrorism, which is a matter of concern for us, and also for them (Rwanda, Uganda), there is a total meeting of minds. We have all condemned it in all forms,” Vice President Hamid Ansari today said.

The Vice President was interacting with the accompanying media delegation en route to New Delhi from Kampala, which he left late last night after concluding his five-day two-nation tour, which also took him to another East African country Rwanda.

His visit to Rwanda, first high-level visit from India, was from February 19-21 and to Uganda from February 21-23, was the first bilateral high-level visit since 1997.

Both Rwanda and Uganda issued joint statements with India, asserting there was “no justification” for terrorism.

“Both leaders unequivocally condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and stressed that there can be no justification for any act of terrorism, irrespective of motivations, wherever and by whosoever committed.”

“In this context, both sides underlined their shared concerns on the menace of cross-border terrorism and stressed the importance of international efforts to prevent and fight terrorism,” the Rwanda-India Joint Statement said.

Vice President Hamid Ansari  with Speaker of Uganda Parliament Rebecca  Alitwala Kadaga and Members of Parliament posing for a group photo, in Kampala on Thursday.

Vice President Hamid Ansari with Speaker of Uganda Parliament Rebecca Alitwala Kadaga and Members of Parliament posing for a group photo, in Kampala on Thursday.

On February, addressing a gathering at the University of Rwanda, Ansari had, in a veiled attack on Pakistan, said, “Threat of terrorism is a major hurdle in our quest for peace and India also faces it from across its borders” and had called for “concerted international efforts” to deal with this menace in a “comprehensive manner”.

Ugandan President Yoweri Museveni and Ansari too issued a joint statement in Entebbe, condemning the menace of terrorism.

“Vice President Ansari and President Museveni unequivocally condemned terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and stressed that there can be no justification for any act of terrorism, irrespective of motivations, wherever and by whosoever committed.”

“In this context, both sides underlined their shared concerns on the menace of terrorism and stressed the importance of international efforts to prevent and fight terrorism,” the India-Uganda Joint Statement said.

All three leaders agreed that “resolute and credible steps must be taken to eliminate safe havens and sanctuaries that provide shelter to terrorists and their activities.”