Computer Crime Research Center

De-radicalise Pak, stop terrorist funding channel: Pant

Asking the world community to stall the financial channels of terrorist outfits, Deputy Chairman of Planning Commission K C Pant today sought "de-radicalisation" of Pakistan which had become the "epicentre" of global terrorism.

"Just as Japan was de-militarised and Germany de-Nazified, Pakistan would also have to be de-radicalised. The mindset of the decision makers and Pakistanis at lArge would need to change," he told the International Plenary Conference session on combating terrorism.

"The Americans should consider tackling the root of the problem and not just its manifestation in Pakistan," Pant said, adding that unless the "source of terrorism" was not neutralised, the problem will not end.

Unless the training camps run by Pakistani intelligence agencies and fundamentalist parties are not neutralised, the problem would not disappear, he said.

"Terrorism will continue to be produced at the factories run across the border in Pak-occupied Kashmir. They will continue to attack Indian interests as they have done for so long but will eventually turn on the West once again," the Deputy Chairman said.

Stating that Pakistani intelligence outfits were "relocating terrorists in PoK and redeploying them against India in Kashmir", Pant said Washington was only achieving "limited success" in its anti-terror operations due to the "support and protection" provided to terrorist groups by elements in the Pakistani army, government and religious parties.

This was despite the fact that the Americans were unearthing new cells of al Qaeda in Pakistan almost every day and the hunt for terrorists was on, he said.

"Developments over the past year have vindicated the Indian position that global terrorism is radiating outward from the Afghan-Pak region and the Pakistani nation state has a major role to play in providing support and sustenance to terrorist groups both in India and the world over," he said.

Referring to the emerging threat of weapons of mass destruction (WMD) falling into the hands of terrorists, Pant said "we have taken some steps to examine this new threat and have made some preliminary moves towards putting a damage limitation system in place".

"However, much more needs to be done, including a dialogue at the highest level with like-minded countries in order to develop methods to alleviate this threat," he said while pointing out that some Pakistani scientists had been arrested and questioned for their links with al Qaeda.

Describing the Pak-Afghan region as one of the major heroin-producing regions of the world, the Planning Commission Deputy Chairman said the money generated from the illegal trade was used to buy weapons and train terrorists. Hawala channels were extensively used to move these illegitimate funds from one part of the world to another.

"If terrorism is to be tackled, it is imperative that the sources of their finance and money laundering operations are traced, identified and neutralised," he said.

On cyber-terrorism, he pointed towards the possibility of "computer replacing AK-47 as the terrorist's favourite weapons".

He also suggested a sustained media campaign to create awareness against terrorism and asked all member-nations to enact analogous legislation against terrorism "to facilitate arrest, extradition, trial and punishment of terrorists cutting across international boundaries".

Pant also sought developing of multi-purpose international cooperation to facilitate administrative, police economic and judicial action against terrorism.


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