Transformation of terrorism from dynamite to Metaverse, AK-47 to virtual assets a matter of concern: Amit Shah | India News

NEW DELHI: Terrorism is undoubtedly the most serious threat to global peace and security but the terror financing is more dangerous because its means and methods are nurtured by such funding, Union home minister Amit Shah said on Friday.
Chairing the first session of the third ‘No Money for Terror’ Ministerial Conference on ‘Global Trends in Terrorist Financing and Terrorism’ in New Delhi, he said, “The financing of terrorism weakens the economy of countries.
The transformation of terrorism from dynamite to Metaverse and AK-47 to virtual assets is definitely a matter of concern for the countries. And we all have to work together to formulate a common strategy against it.”
He added that some countries protect and shelter terrorists. “Protecting a terrorist is equivalent to promoting terrorism. We should never ignore terrorists’ safe havens or their resources. We also have to expose the doublespeak of such elements who sponsor and support them.”
“To achieve the goal of ‘No Money for Terror’, the global community must understand the mode – medium – method of terror financing and adopt the principle of ‘One Mind, One Approach’ in cracking down on them. The Darknet is being used by terrorists to spread radical content and conceal their identities. There is an increase in the use of virtual assets like cryptocurrency. We need to understand the patterns of these Darknet activities and find their solutions,” he added,
Shah further said the emerging trends of the illegal trade of narcotics and the challenge of narco-terror have given a new dimension to terror financing. “In view of this, there is a need for close cooperation among all nations.”
As far as India is concerned, he said in the last few years, the country under Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s leadership has succeeded in cracking down on terror financing.
“India condemns terrorism in all its forms and manifestations and we believe that no reason can justify an act, such as taking innocent lives. India herself has been a victim of terrorism for several decades, which is sponsored from across the border. Indian security forces and civilians have had to deal with incidents of extremely serious terrorist violence perpetrated in a sustained and coordinated manner,” Shah said, expressing his sympathy for the victims of terrorist attacks all over the world.
He said that world should never compromise with this evil.
“The international community has a collective approach that terrorism must be condemned in all its forms, but, the forms and manifestations of terrorism are continuously evolving due to technological revolution. Today, terrorists and terrorist groups understand the nuances of modern weapons and information technology, and the dynamics of the cyber and financial space very well, and use them, Shah said, adding that the threat of terrorism cannot and should not be linked to any religion, nationality or group.
“To confront terrorism, we have made significant progress in fortifying the security architecture, as well as the legal and financial systems. In spite of this, terrorists are constantly finding new ways to carry out violence, radicalise youth and raise financial resources. The ‘Dark Net’ is being used by terrorists to spread radical content and conceal their identities. We need to understand the patterns of these Dark Net activities and find their solutions,” Shah said.
The Union home minister rued that there are countries that seek to undermine, or even hinder, “our collective resolve to fight terrorism”. “We have seen that some countries protect and shelter terrorists, protecting a terrorist is equivalent to promoting terrorism. It will be our collective responsibility that such elements never succeed in their intentions,” he said.
Shah added that after August 2021, the situation in South Asian region has changed and the regime change and the growing influence of Al Qaeda and ISIS have emerged as a significant challenge to regional security. “These new equations have made the problem of terror financing more serious. Three decades ago, the whole world has had to bear the serious consequences of one such regime change, the result of which we all have seen in the horrific attack of 9/11. Along with Al Qaeda, organisations in South Asia like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed continue to spread terror,” he stated.
Shah urged nations not to ignore terrorists’ safe havens or their resources. “It is important that this conference, the participating countries and the organisations should not take a selective or complacent perspective of the challenges of this region,” the Union home minister said.
Shah said that India has strengthened the fight against terrorism and its financing, with the amendment of the Unlawful Activities Prevention Act (UAPA), strengthening the National Investigation Agency (NIA), and giving a new direction to financial intelligence. “It is the result of our continuous efforts that terrorist incidents in India have come down drastically, which in turn, has also resulted in a drastic reduction in the economic losses caused by terrorism.”
He opined that cooperation among countries in areas such as extradition, prosecution, intelligence sharing, capacity building and “Combating the Financing of Terrorism (CFT)”, is important in the fight against terrorism. “Our mutual cooperation becomes even more important given that terrorists and terrorist groups easily coordinate and conjoin their resources across borders. Multilateral institutions such as the United Nations and the presence of platforms such as the Financial Action Task Force (FATF) are most effective in terms of preventing terrorism in the field of CFT. FATF is playing an important role in setting and implementing global standards to prevent and combat, money laundering and terrorist financing,” Shah said.
He added India remains committed to all efforts to combat terrorism, by sharing intelligence, capacity building for effective border control, preventing misuse of modern technologies, monitoring and preventing illicit financial flows and cooperating in investigative and judicial processes.
He revealed India’s strategy against the financing of terrorism is based on these six pillars:

  • 1. Strengthening the legislative and technological framework
  • 2. Creation of a comprehensive monitoring framework
  • 3. Actionable intelligence sharing mechanism and strengthening of the investigation and police operations
  • 4. Provision for confiscation of property
  • 5. Prevent misuse of legal entities and new technologies and,
  • 6. Establishing international cooperation and coordination

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