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At 2+2 dialogue, India to raise with US ban on Jaish chief Azhar

By Vicky Nanjappa
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    New Delhi, Aug 27: India is likely to raise the issue regarding Jaish-e-Mohammad chief, Maulana Masood Azhar with the United States during the 2+2 dialogue to be held on September 6.

    Maulana Masood Azhar

    The move to designate Azhar has been blocked several times by China at the insistence of its all weather friend Pakistan. While there is no fresh proposal to proscribe Azhar at the UN, India feels that it could work along with the US and ensure that China stops blocking this move.

    Also Read | Maulana Azhar's close aide among those killed in 'very significant' Tral encounter

    The last time at the UN, China blocked a US led move to proscribe Azhar. Sources tell OneIndia that this issue would be raised when Secretary of State, Mike Pompeo and Secretary of Defence, James Mattis travel to India next month. The key focus of the meet would be defence and security.

    Following the meet at India, Pompeo would head to Pakistan, where he will meet with the new establishment led by Imran Khan. India feels that Pompeo is expected to deliver a strong message to Pakistan during his visit. This would also include the case relating to Azhar, who is the mastermind of the Pathankot attack.

    Also Read | Fresh batch of Jaish men being trained to release prisoners from Kashmir jails

    The visit to Pakistan by Pompeo would be a crucial one. It would be interesting to see how Imran Khan would handle the situation. After he came to power, he has expressed his willingness to improve ties with India. He said that Pakistan is willing to take two steps for every one step that India takes.

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