People’s Republic of China may have joined India in seeking dismantling of terror camps in Afghanistan and other regions, but New Delhi is not ready to trust Beijing’s commitment on counter-terrorism. “Given the track-record of China on the issue of terrorism, India has reasons not to trust Beijing’s words against terrorism,” highly-places sources said.

At the 4th NSA-level regional security dialogue in Dushanbe, China joined India, Russia, Iran and four central Asian countries- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan- in strongly condemning terrorism and calling for dismantling of terror camps in Afghanistan and the region. But Indian officials see China as an untrustworhty partner in fight against terrorism.  

Sources said China’s stand vis-à-vis terrorism has been analysed by the diplomats after this high-profile security meeting. According to sources, the officials of security and diplomatic establishments believe that China cannot be trusted on the issue of terrorism and, therefore, a close watch should be kept on its action in terms of terror

in Afghanistan and Pakistan. “China has never been a reliable partner of India in its fight against terrorism. It has only complicated the matter for India,” sources told The Daily Guardian Review. Officials recall how China has always created obstacles whenever there have been moves to get Pakistan-based terror group Jaish-e-Mohammed’s chief Masood Azhar designated as a global terrorist at the UN Security Council. India cannot forget that China had put a technical hold on a proposal in the UNSC to ban Azhar following the Pulwama terror attack, sources said. China’s counter-terrorism pitch is being analysed in India against this background.   China has also opposed US’ proposal in the UN for designating Pathankot attack mastermind Masood Azhar as a global terrorist. Then India had taken up the matter with Beijing. But no positive response came from the leadership in China, sources said.

The global community and India cannot also ignore China’s bonhomie with the Taliban which continues to be linked with terror groups like Al Qaeda and Lashkar-e-Taiba. “Does this not fly in the face of China’s claim that it wants to be part of the global counter-terrorism efforts  in Afghanistan?” sources ask. “China will continue to hobnob with the Taliban forces, and at the same time will keep on expressing wish to dismantle terror camps on Afghan soil,” officials argue.   

That China has been silent on terror activities against India from Pakistan’s territory also formed the discussion at the meetings in New Delhi. Officials stress on the need for the world community to keep China’s future action on radar as far as its counter-terrorism commitment is concerned.  “China has never come out in open with critical comments on Pakistan’s nexus with terrorism, even though it has been proved several times by India on many occasions,” officials say. Sources said that China realized the heat of terrorism in Pakistan only when its citizens were killed in a terror attack in Karachi. India was then quick to send a message to China. In a signal to China, External Affairs Ministry Spokesperson Arindam Bagchi had said that the terror attack in Karachi only underlined the need for all countries to take an “undifferentiated” position against terrorism and that India condemns all such attacks.