India and 50 African countries adopted the ‘Lucknow Declaration’ at first India – Africa Defence Minister’s Conclave.
The Conclave was held on the sidelines of the ongoing DefExpo 2020 (5th to 9th February, 2020) in Lucknow (Uttar Pradesh).
Highlights of the Declaration
Peace and Security
All the signatories committed to continue their collaboration in the fields of peace and security including conflict prevention, resolution, management and peacebuilding.
It also aims to enhance the role of women in peacekeeping.
To exchange expertise and trainers, strengthening regional and continental early warning capacities and mechanisms.
Terrorism is a major threat in the region and thus aims to take resolute action in rooting out terrorism in all its forms and manifestations, eliminating financing channels and halting cross-border movement of terrorists.
It also urges the international community to envisage the adoption of the Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism in the United Nations General Assembly (UNGA).
Importance of Indo-Pacific:
To encourage enhanced cooperation between India and Africa on the evolving concept of Indo-Pacific.
It also welcomes the African Unions’ vision for peace and security in Africa that coincides with India’s vision of SAGAR (Security and Growth for all in the Region).
SAGAR is an articulation of India’s vision for the Indian Ocean.
SAGAR has elements such as enhancement of capacities to safeguard land and maritime territories & interests; deepening economic and security cooperation in the littoral; action to deal with natural disasters and maritime threats like piracy, terrorism.
Compliance at UNSC:
To strengthenth the UN Counter-Terrorism mechanisms and to ensure strict compliance with the the UN Security Council sanctions regime on terrorism.
Origin and Status of Comprehensive Convention on International Terrorism (CCIT)
India has pushed for an intergovernmental convention to enhance prosecution and extradition of terrorists since 1996.
Although consensus eludes towards the adoption of the terrorism convention, discussions have yielded three separate protocols that aim to tackle terrorism:
International Convention for the Suppression of Terrorist Bombings, adopted on 15 December 1997;
International Convention for the Suppression of the Financing of Terrorism, adopted on 9 December 1999;
International Convention for the Suppression of Acts of Nuclear Terrorism, adopted on 13 April 2005.