SAARC nations to step up measures to curb terrorism

November 14th, 2007 - 2:51 am ICT by admin  
At the meeting, hosted under the chairmanship of Union Home Minister Shivraj Patil, the member nations decided to increase the frequency of the meeting of their intelligence chiefs to twice a year from the present annual meetings.

They said this was necessary since it would help in increasing communication and coordination between the police chiefs and assist in curbing terror.

“The police chiefs of SAARC member countries should not only meet annually, but they should meet biennially too so that they can develop a degree of contacts and familiarity with each other. And discuss and review how we are moving forward towards implementation of these various mechanisms and the decisions that have been taken,” said Indian Home Secretary Madhukar Gupta.

“Also it was decided that electronic networking between the states should be put together,” he added.

Gupta said the next meeting of the police chiefs would be held in February 2008 in Islamabad, which will also host the third SAARC Home Ministers Conference, while the fourth one will be held in Male.

“All of us are concerned with this business of terrorism that is increasingly affecting all the states in this country. All the states mentioned what steps they are taking, and as I said earlier, we should emphasize… We should come together and enact as meaningfully together as possible,” added Gupta.

India offered Sri Lanka to provide assistance in strengthening the SAARC Terrorist Offences Monitoring Desk (STOMD) and SAARC Drug Offences Monitoring Desk (SDOMD).

The Home Ministers reiterated their commitment to the 14th SAARC Summit Declaration of moving from the declaratory to the implementation phase and reaffirmed their commitment to the need for a secure environment for facilitating economic growth, development and progress of the region.

They also expressed satisfaction at the working of the institutional mechanisms within the ambit of the Home Ministries, and urged enhanced coordination and networking among the police forces of the SAARC countries.

The Ministers also discussed the SAARC Visa Scheme. It was agreed to provide a special tenure-linked dispensation to the officials of the SAARC Secretariat. It was also agreed that retired Judges of Supreme Court, serving High Court Judges should be included in the Consolidated List of Entitled Persons. (ANI)

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