"We need to target not only the terrorists, but also their entire supporting ecosystem," Modi said.

Modi calls for strongest action against state sponsors of terror PTI/file photo
news International Thursday, September 08, 2016 - 13:39

Without naming Pakistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday said that strongest action should be reserved for those states that use terrorism as an instrument of state policy.

"We need to target not only the terrorists, but also their entire supporting ecosystem," Modi said while addressing the 11th East Asia Summit here, te premier leaders-led forum of the Asia-Pacific region.

"And, our strongest action should be reserved for those state actors who employ terrorism as an instruments of state policy," he said.

Stating that most countries in the South Asian region were pursuing a peaceful path to economic prosperity, he said: "But, there is one country in India's neighbourhood whose competitive advantage rests solely in producing and exporting terrorism."

India-Pakistan relations have soured in recent times following the killing of Hizbul Mujahideen terrorist Burhan Wani in Jammu and Kashmir in July. Pakistan described Wani as a "martyr".

Over 70 people have died in large-scale violence in the state since then.

Stating that terrorism was the most serious challenge to open and pluralistic societies, Modi called for collective efforts to combat the scourge.

The Prime Minister said that India remained committed, including through membership of export control regimes, to pursuing total and verifiable elimination of weapons of mass destruction.

Since its inception in 2005 -- India is a founding member -- the East Asia Summit has played a significant role in the strategic, geopolitical and economic evolution of East Asia.

"India will remain steadfast in the shared pursuit of regional, strategic political and economic priorities within the East Asia Summit framework," Modi said. 

Earlier on Thursday, speaking at the 14th India-Asean Summit here, in an obvious reference to Pakistan, Modi said "export of terror" was a common threat to the region.

"Export of terror, growing radicalisation and spread of extreme violence are common security threats to our societies," he said.

He said Asean was central to India's Act East Policy while describing the ties with southeast Asia as a "source of harmony".

On the sidelines of the two summits, Modi also held bilateral meetings with host and Laos Prime Minister Thongloun Sisoulith, South Korean President Park Geun-hye, and State Counsellor and Foreign Minister of Myanmar Aung San Suu Kyi. 

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