State actors greatest threat to nuclear security, says Modi

modi visit to saudi arabia

WASHINGTON: Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi has claimed that ‘state actors,” working with terrorists and nuclear smugglers, were the greatest risk to global security.

Addressing leaders from more than 50 states, who gathered in Washington on Friday for the two-day nuclear security summit, Mr Modi asked the international community to give “his terrorist is not my terrorist” attitude.

He then underlined three features of contemporary terrorism: “First, today’s terrorism uses extreme violence as theatre,” he said. “Second, we are no longer looking for a man in a cave, but we are hunting for a terrorist in a city with a computer or a smart phone.”

And “third, State actors working with nuclear traffickers and terrorists present the greatest risk,” he said.

The US media noted that this was an apparent reference to the A Q Khan network that allegedly sold nuclear technology to Iran and Libya.

“Terror has evolved. Terrorists are using 21st century technology. But our responses are rooted in the past,” warned the Indian prime minister while claiming that last month’s terrorist attack in Brussels had shown the global community “how real and immediate is the threat to nuclear security from terrorism.”

Mr Modi also one million US dollars to the Nuclear Safety Fund of the IAEA, second such contribution by India in as many years.

Earlier, in his speech at the White House dinner for the participants of the two-day summit, Mr Modi underlined the need for maintaining highest level of vigil to prevent nuclear terrorism.

“Terrorism is globally networked. But, we still act only nationally to counter this threat… Drop the notion that terrorism is someone else’s problem and that ‘his’ terrorist is not ‘my’ terrorist,” he said.

“Nuclear security must remain an abiding national priority. All States must completely abide by their international obligations,” Mr Modi said.

In other remarks at the summit, Mr Modi said India would also join the so-called tri-lateral initiative, which is the joint statement of the previous three co-chairs of the Nuclear Security Summit.

“This group of countries, which India is joining, is committed to holding the bar high on nuclear security,” he said.

India is joining three other areas of ‘gift baskets’ in priority areas, like sharing best practices through centres of excellence. Pakistan has already established a centre of excellence. India will also follow Pakistan in holding international meetings on nuclear security and counter-nuclear smuggling.

India will also host a meeting on global effort to combat nuclear terrorism in 2017.


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