On Thursday, India voiced its concerns against over the use of African resources to incite violence and terrorism in various parts of the country. During a UNSC debate titled 'Peace and Security in Africa: Strengthening the fight against the financing of armed groups and terrorists through the illicit trafficking of natural resources', India highlighted that the exploitation of African resources must be stopped, further adding that those who have been involved in supporting terrorism must be held accountable by the international community.
Minister of State for External Affairs V Muraleedharan, while speaking at the global forum, said that the terrorist and armed groups have been making deep inroads recently.
He explained how several vulnerable groups are exploiting security gaps and fragile governance institutions in the continent, particularly in the Horn of Africa, Sahel, and East and Central Africa.
The Minister further stressed that terrorist groups are accentuating their funding by exploiting rich regions. He said, "These regions have remained vulnerable to money laundering and terrorist financing. Terrorist and armed groups are increasingly funding their activities through illegal exploitation of natural resources and trafficking of wildlife, and extortion, etc., amongst other well-known activities."
He continued, "We need to recognise the fact that terrorism, like armed conflicts, is expanding in Africa. Al-Qaida and ISIL-affiliated terrorist groups in different parts of Africa have gathered significant strength in recent years, thriving on the illegal mining of artisan gold, rare minerals, gemstones, uranium, coal, timber etc. through illegal trade networks facilitated by transnational criminal networks."
"Terrorist groups such as Al-Shabaab have put in place elaborate revenue collection networks, to support their terrorist activities. If left unaddressed, terrorism may seriously jeopardise peace prospects in several parts of Africa, which is already ravaged by armed conflict," he stated.