Vice President M. Hamid Ansari has said that what is needed to curb and eliminate the scourge of terrorism is for the countries in the region to unite and fight it in all its forms and manifestations.
"States sponsoring terrorism must be isolated by international community and forced to abandon the use of terrorism as a tool of state policy," Vice President Ansari said while addressing the gathering after inaugurating the third Counter Terrorism Conference organized by the India Foundation, here today.
Nepal Deputy Prime Minister Bimlendra Nidhi, Haryana Chief Manohar Lal Khattar, Union Minister for Railways Suresh Parbhu, Minister of State for External Affairs M.J. Akbar and other dignitaries were present on the occasion.
The Vice President said that in recent years nothing has caused greater pain, disruption and inconvenience to societies, governments and individuals than the phenomenon of terrorism.
"The security in the Indian Ocean region is capricious on account of a complex set of problems inherited from its recent past," he added.
The Vice President said that the removal of existing, often moderate, regimes and the subsequent breakdown of governance resulted in extremist groups capturing the political initiative, exploiting the resentment and anger of the local populations and carrying out terrorist acts with impunity.
"The so-called war on terror has bred its own brand of deprivation and suffering with hundreds of people being killed or injured, even if they were not related to terrorist activities," he added.
The Vice President said that the most virulent factor fuelling terrorism is state sponsorship of and collusion with terrorists and a case in point is Pakistan's use of extremist groups as an instrument of foreign policy is well documented.
He further said that it is not sustainable for countries to continue to address terrorism or transnational crime from a narrow national interest perspective, nor can development be viewed as a standalone endeavour independent from security.
"To provide a comprehensive answer to the threats posed by transnational crime and terrorism in the Indian Ocean Region, regional security and development agendas need to be connected and coordinated," he added.
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