President Ram Nath Kovind on Tuesday said India and the European Union must persuade the world not to distinguish between “good and bad terrorists”. He called for sanctions against “state sponsors of terrorism”, in a veiled reference to Pakistan’s alleged support of extremists.
“Pockets of instability and extremism can be found in the region to Europe’s east and India’s west,” Kovind said at the Hellenic Foundation for European and Foreign Policy in Athens. “They are a worry for both Europe and India.”
Kovind said that promotion of terrorism by state and non-state actors, extremism, proliferation of sensitive weapons, use of regular communication and financial channels by terror groups all pose a challenge to humanity.
“India sees peace not just as the absence of conflict but as a reflection of sustainable development and indeed of any effort that anticipates and prevents strife and suffering,” he added.
Kovind said India was committed to an “international order marked by robust, rules-based multilateral institutions; by multi-polarity in international governance” and connectivity projects that are viable and sustainable. At the Shangri la Dialogue in Singapore earlier this month, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had affirmed India’s principle of “strategic autonomy”.
He said India is also committed to combating climate change and keeping the promises made in the 2015 Paris Agreement. “When we work for combating climate change, we contribute to world peace,” he said.
Kovind also invited Greek industries to invest in various Indian enterprises and said that the Greek shipping industry will find “lucrative opportunities” in India’s ambitious Sagarmala venture, made up of over 500 coastal industrialisation and port connectivity and modernisation projects.