SAARC nations will soon have a regional joint anti- terror mechanism

December 7th, 2007 - 10:42 pm ICT by admin  

By Naveen Kapoor
New Delhi, Dec 7 (ANI): South Asian Countries will soon have a security network under legal assistance agreement, a mechanism through which all the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) nations can share information on terrorism and related criminal activities.
SAARC council of ministers today unanimously decide and directed the finalization of the draft agreement on Mutual Legal Assistance.
Legal advisers from all SAARC nations will be meeting in Colombo in April 2008 to give a final shape to the agreement.
“All the countries of SAARC are victims of terrorism and we should have mutual legal assistance to tackle terrorists criminals and undesirable criminal activities in the region,” said Indian External Affairs Minister Pranab Mukherjee at the conclusion of SAARC council of ministers meeting in New Delhi on Friday.
The decision of establishing a security network among the SAARC nations is based on the recommendations of the Home Ministers of the regional grouping, who had met in New Delhi in October this year.
India already has similar bilateral agreements with neighbouring Pakistan, which is called the Joint Anti-terror mechanism, and both the countries have already shared information in the two meetings that have already taken place.
According to a source in the Ministry of External Affairs, extradition of terrorists and criminals will also be a part of agreement on Mutual legal Assistance.
It is good news for Indian security establishment, which is trying hard to extradite terrorists and mafia kingpins involved in the deadliest terror acts and killings of hundreds of Indian citizens.
The absence of extradition treaty with Bangladesh and Pakistan is making the task for security agencies even more difficult. (ANI)

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