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‘Terrorists don’t have religion’: Sushma Swaraj hits back at Pakistan in UN speech, Modi says ‘excellent’

New York: India’s External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj hit back powerfully at Pakistan saying it must “give up terror” if the two countries must “sit down and talk.”
Addressing the UN General Assembly in Hindi, Swaraj landed a solid left hook to counter Pakistan Prime Minister Nawaz Sharif’s four-point peace initiative. “We do not need four points, we need just one – give up terrorism and let us sit down and talk.”
Prime Minister Narendra Modi showered praise on Sushma Swaraj for the bold tone, which was a foregone conclusion after Sharif’s turn at the UN barely 24 hours ago.
Just spoke to @SushmaSwaraj ji & congratulated her for the excellent speech at the @UN. A perfect articulation of key global issues.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) October 1, 2015
We bring you some of the top quotes from the Swaraj Swaraj speech in New York:
“The international community should make countries aiding, arming and protecting terrorists pay a heavy price.”
“None of us can accept that terrorism is a legitimate instrument of statecraft. The world shared our outrage at the 2008 Mumbai terror attacks in which citizens of many nations were helplessly butchered. That the mastermind behind the attack is walking free is an affront to the entire international community.”
“Not only have past assurances in this regard not been honoured but new cross-border terrorist attacks have taken place recently, in which two terrorists from across the border have also been captured alive.”
“We all know that these attacks are meant to destabilize India and legitimize Pakistan’s illegal occupation of parts of the Indian State of Jammu and Kashmir and its claim on the rest of it.”
“The Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism can no longer be held up nor can we be held hostage by seeking to define terrorism when the General Assembly in 2006 adopted the Global Counter Terrorism Strategy unanimously.”
“Member states must undertake their obligations to investigate and prosecute those who are alleged to have supported terrorism.”
“Let us hold talks at the level of National Security Advisers on all issues connected to terrorism and an early meeting of our Directors General of Military Operations to address the situation on the border.”
After some nonstop Pakistan-bashing, Swaraj also weaved in the Sustainable Development Goals, saying the real shortcut to social change is “empowering the girl child.” She came in for high praise from Prime Minister Modi on this too. “Fully agree with you SushmaSwaraj ji, empowering the girl child is vital to bring about a change in society,” he tweeted. Modi, on his Twitter site, says Swaraj’s speech at the UN is a “must-watch.”

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