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Masood Azhar Named As A Terrorist By UN

The UN has designated the leader of a militant group behind a deadly bomb attack that brought India and Pakistan to the brink of war as a terrorist.

Masood Azhar is the leader of Jaish-e-Mohammed (JeM), which carried out a suicide bombing in February killing 40 troops in Indian-administered Kashmir.

The UN move comes after China dropped its objection to the listing. India hailed it as a diplomatic victory. Masood Azhar will be subject to an assets freeze and a travel ban.

“Big, small, all join together. Masood Azhar designated as a terrorist in @UN Sanctions list. Grateful to all for their support,” Syed Akbaruddin, India’s ambassador to the United Nations, tweeted.

The Pakistani said it would immediately enforce the sanctions, but also took aim at India.

“Pakistan maintains that terrorism is a menace to the world, including the Indian state-sponsored terrorism against innocent Kashmiris,” foreign office spokesman Mohammad Faisal said. He added that it would be false to present the development as a “victory for India and validation of its stance”.

The proposal had been brought forward by the US, Britain and France after the Kashmir attacks – the deadliest in the disputed region during a 30-year-long insurgency. The attack worsened tensions between nuclear-armed Pakistan and India, with war temporarily appearing a real possibility.

China – a long-time ally of Pakistan – had previously blocked the sanctions committee from imposing sanctions on Masood Azhar in 2016 and 2017 but agreed to the proposal on Wednesday.