NEW DELHI — In a BRICS High Representatives Meeting, India brought up the issue of cross-border terrorism and activities of terrorist groups, in particular the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed. It was a thinly-veiled attack on Pakistan as both the groups operate from across the border.

National Security Adviser Ajit Doval hosted the 11th Meeting of the BRICS High Representatives Responsible for National Security through video conferencing on Aug. 24.

BRICS is an acronym given to the group of five emerging economies of the world, in order: Brazil, Russia, India, China, and South Africa.

The representatives adopted and recommended the BRICS Counter-Terrorism Action Plan for consideration by the BRICS Summit, according to a statement by the Ministry of External Affairs. 

The action plan aims to further strengthen existing mechanisms of cooperation in areas such as financing and combating terrorism, misuse of the internet by terrorists, curbing the travel of terrorists, border controls, protection of soft targets, information sharing, capacity building, and regional and international cooperation.

In a veiled attack at Pakistan over cross-border terrorism, India said that activities of groups like the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed threaten peace. 

“India raised the issue of cross-border terrorism and activities of groups such as the Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, which enjoy state support and threaten peace and security,” the statement said.

Lashkar-e-Taiba is responsible for its infamous attack on the Indian Parliament in 2001 and a series of attacks in Mumbai seven years later. While Lashkar-e-Taiba was founded way back in the 1980s, Jaish-e-Mohammed is a fairly young terrorist group that in 2016 attacked an Indian airbase and in 2019 killed 40 Indian soldiers in Jammu and Kashmir in a suicide bombing attack.

It said the meeting reviewed the regional and global political and security scenario with particular focus on the current developments in Afghanistan, Iran, West Asia, and the Gulf and emerging threats to national security, such as cybersecurity. 

The meeting was attended by Yang Jiechi, Member of the Political Bureau of the Communist Party of China Central Committee and Director of the Office of the Central Commission for Foreign Affairs; Ncediso Goodenough Kodwa, Deputy Minister of State Security of the Republic of South Africa; Augusto Heleno Ribeiro Pereira, Minister of State and Head of the Institutional Security Cabinet of the Presidency of the Federative Republic of Brazil and; General Nikolai Patrushev, Secretary of the Security Council of the Russian Federation.

Other items on the agenda were cooperation among law enforcement agencies, health safety and healthcare, and counter-terrorism.

India holds the chairship of BRICS this year, which coincides with the 15th anniversary of the BRICS foundation. The meeting of high representatives took place ahead of the summit meeting of leaders of BRICS nations that India will host this year.

(With inputs from ANI)

Edited by Amrita Das and Krishna Kakani

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