New York [US]: India on Tuesday contributed USD 200,000 to United Nations Investigative Team to Promote Accountability for Crimes Committed by Da’esh (UNITAD).
According to an official statement, the contribution, handed over by India’s Permanent Representative to the United Nations TS Tirumurti to Myriam Fillaud, Head of the New York Office of the UNITAD, is aimed at supporting UNITAD’s efforts to investigate crimes by the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL).
The contribution has been provided to support two areas of UNITAD’s investigations, that is, the development and use of chemical and biological weapons by ISIL and ISIL crimes against cultural heritage in Iraq.
Strongly condemning the use of chemical and biological weapons under any circumstances, India has supported UNITAD’s investigation into the development and use of chemical and biological weapons by ISIL in Iraq. The contribution will enable the finalization of initial case briefs in relation to the development and use of chemical and biological weapons by ISIL.
Further, India has been highlighting the serious threat to international peace and security emanating from the acquisition of weapons of mass destruction by terrorist groups through an annual consensus resolution tabled in the UN General Assembly, since 2002, on “Measures to prevent terrorists from acquiring weapons of mass destruction”.
According to the statement, UNITAD, in its preliminary investigations, has identified a number of crimes against cultural heritage committed by ISIL, including the destruction of shrines and culturally significant sites of the Yazidi, Kak’ai, Shabak and Turkmen communities. The creation of specialized and dedicated capacities within UNITAD will strengthen its investigations into ISIL attacks against cultural heritage and enable prosecutions for such crimes.
India’s contribution will help UNITAD establish a dedicated Cultural Heritage Crimes Unit and facilitate the prosecution of those responsible for attacks on places of religious and cultural significance in Iraq. From the Buddhas of Bamiyan to the cultural treasures of Timbuktu, India has strongly condemned the destruction of heritage sites and places of immense cultural value to entire humankind by terrorist groups.
Further, the statement reiterated the significance India attaches to the mandate and the work carried out by the UNITAD in helping the Iraqi authorities and other law enforcement authorities worldwide bring ISIL perpetrators to justice. (ANI)