November 26, 2022

akbaruddin: Vote against Palestinian NGO my decision alone: Akbaruddin | India News – Times of India

NEW DELHI: The insinuation in a US newspaper that India’s vote against observer status for Palestinian NGO Shahed at UN’s Economic and Social Council in 2019 was linked to the alleged purchase by the government of Israeli software Pegasus was “rubbished” Saturday by then India’s permanent representative to UN Syed Akbaruddin.
Akbaruddin said it was his decision alone to vote in favour of Israel‘s contention that Shahed had links with terrorist organisations.
“It was a decision based on my assessment of coalescence of our interests on a matter relating to terrorism,” Akbaruddin told ToI.
“After the deliberations there were concerns raised about the NGO’s links with terrorists. We had similar concerns in general and so I decided locally without any consultations since this was a straight forward case. We along with 27 others voted to stop accreditation and it was approved. No one from the headquarters asked me about it before the vote or after the vote,” he added.
Akbaruddin had earlier in the day tweeted that the insinuation about India’s UN vote was “utter rubbish”.
India along with 27 other countries including Japan, Germany, France, UK and US had voted in favour of the decision proposed by Israel to deny consultative status to the Palestinian NGO. Fifteen countries had voted against. Israel had alleged that Shahed was a terrorist organisation and acted as an arm of Hamas.
Akbaruddin said the issue had emerged rather rapidly in the afternoon and no consultation was either warranted or even possible.
MEA had later clarified that India’s decision had nothing to do with the Palestinian cause and that it was in line with the government’s position that greater scrutiny was required ensure NGOs seeking observer status had no terror links.
“We voted in favour of a proposal which was submitted by Israel at the Economic and Social Council of the UN for further scrutiny by the committee on NGOs. The proposal was submitted by Israel based on information that the NGO allegedly has close contacts with terrorist organisations,” the MEA spokesperson had then said.

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