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    OpputunityLaw Student CornerGLOBAL TERRORISM: CHANGING DIMENSIONS

    GLOBAL TERRORISM: CHANGING DIMENSIONS

    INTRODUCTION:

    The word ‘Terrorism’ & its concept seems simple to understand by the word ‘Terror’ in it, but in reality, the word terrorism has no clear definition. The most intriguing part of the discussion of terrorism is the discussion over the definition of the term ‘Terrorism’ itself. As various scholars, global organizations, developed & developing nations failed to reach any unanimous conclusion about what terrorism is?

    In the absence of any specific universal legal definition adopted by the international organizations of the term, there comes a controversial judgment by Special Tribunal for Lebanon, 2011.[1] The tribunal defines ‘Transnational Terrorism’ out of the International customary laws by defining the Opinio Juris on the term in the international community, which includes three key elements to constitute the term terrorism.

    Firstly, an act of heinous crime i.e., against human rights like murder, genocide, arson, hostilities, mass-kidnapping, arson, and so on; including the acts of threatening to do these acts. Secondly, the purpose behind their first violent action is to spread a dominance of fear among civilians to coerce sovereign head/international/national community to directly or indirectly demand them to perform or to refrain from doing an action. Lastly, an action that goes beyond boundaries, i.e., a transnational element with it.

    GLOBAL & DOMESTIC TERRORISM:

    Some scholars divide terrorism into Global/International and Domestic/National Terrorism, but relying on the basic common law definition of ‘Terrorism’, the element of ‘Transnational’, classifies a violent act within the purview of the terrorist act when it goes beyond the boundaries and involves a Triangle act of spreading fear which affects the innocent civilians by an unexpected, violent mass destruction and aims to achieve a target against by threatening any third party to change its position or policy in their favour.

    • DOMESTIC TERRORISM

    There is no such offence classified as ‘Domestic Terrorism’ in India, but the US defines Domestic Terrorism, “Homegrown terrorism that targets and venues the home nation.”[2] These groups are being radicalized by further ideological goals influenced by domestic political, religious, social, racial, or environmental extremists.

    • DOMESTIC TERRORISM CHANGES INTO GLOBAL TERRORISM

    Domestic Terrorism definition has many exceptions especially when a domestic group demands the government to change its policy but those demonstrations sometimes turned violent like ‘Jat Aarakshan’ & ‘Farmers Protest’. We can’t classify these radical and extremist domestic protests whether legal or not in the definition of terrorism. Though these domestic groups fulfill the two other elements of Terrorism, they lack the third one i.e. transnational element. Thus, marking these Anti-Terrorist groups will become a global threat to the spirit of democracy. The public will be banned from making protests and doing demonstrations against the wrong government policies by classifying them as a terrorist.

    Similarly, the ‘Maoists’ (Naxalists) can’t be classified as Terrorists as they are never against the civilians but the discriminatory government policies. They are Anti-Govt. not Anti-National or Terrorist, though they used to attack innocent national military groups. So, thereby we can conclude that there is nothing like domestic terrorism unless it is guided and funded by non-state actors or radical groups. Pakistan-funded terrorism in Kashmir & Khalistani in Punjab is a fine example of Global Terrorism.

    INTERNATIONAL RESPONSE ON GLOBAL TERRORISM

    Even in the absence of a universally accepted, legal definition of terrorism, there is a prudent, effective, and prevention-focused international response to terrorism with the respect for human rights and based on a normative legal framework and embedded in the core principles of the due process of law. [3]

    • UNITED NATIONS VERSUS TERRORISM

    We can preview the change in dimensions of Global Terrorism by the view of the United Nations in classifying terrorists into ‘Liberation Fighters’ in 1945, they claim that violence is a ‘direct action’ to achieve the right of ‘self-determination’. Afterward, the UN Charters changed this term into, ‘Liberations Conflicts’ and adopted State-friendly methods like the Universal Declaration of Human Rights which urged for the adoption of human rights globally.

    • US-LED GLOBAL TERRORISM

    In the 1950s to 1970s, international groups believe in a ridiculous classification of, ‘Good & Bad Terrorism’, but we can notice the transition in their dimensions when the US itself becomes the victim of the major terrorist attacks. The World Trade Center bombing, in New York City on February 26, 1993, with 1000+ casualties changed the US mind for taking some strict actions in vis-a-vis using globalization emerged in the 1990s as a weapon.

    The Security Council under its resolution 1267 (1999), designates the two major non-state groups, namely the ‘Taliban and Al-Qaida’, as “terrorist” organizations, following the refusal of the Taliban to surrender Osama Bin Laden for being responsible for August 1988, US Embassies, Kenya and the United Republic of Tanzania attacks.

    Later, the US eye on Afghanistan led to the division of the so-called “Consolidated List” containing associated individuals and entities with the Taliban and Al-Qaida into two separate lists. The “Al-Qaida, or 1988 List”, and the ‘Taliban List’, Security Council resolution -1989 (2011). The Talibani entities are those who put a threat to the peace and security of Afghanistan. The further extension ‘Al-Qaida List’ into ‘ISIL and Al Nusrah Front (ANF)’ under Security Council resolution 2253 (2015), shows the continuous efforts on global terrorism.[4]

    INDIA’S ROLE TO COUNTER GLOBAL TERRORISM

     India is continuously making efforts to counterterrorism and wisely knows that joining hands with the US is crucial. Recently, on 25th Sept 2021[5], the white-house meeting between leaders of two nations where they jointly condemned cross-border terrorism and considers the importance of banning financial, military, and any other support to terrorist organizations as proscribed by the UNSCR 1267 Sanctions Committee. Previously India got huge success in designating the Pakistan-based radical cleric Hafiz Saeed’s Jamat-ud-Dawa (JuD) as the front organization for the Lashkar-e-Taiba as ‘Terrorist’ for involvement in the 26/11, 2008 Mumbai attack. India is leading the way to the world by avenging Global Terrorism with world examples of URI surgical strikes cross-borders.

    PRESENT SCENARIO & CONCLUSION

    Global Terrorism wittiness various efforts, challenges, and successful results too by International Organizations like United Nations and developed nations led by the United States. Technological advancement and new-age weapons can counter-terrorism as UNODC claimed that the use of advanced technological tools by terrorist organizations is a great hindrance in the way. RADICALIZATION by International groups is something that is categorized by states like the United States & India as a colliding ideological weapon against radicalized, extremist terrorist groups.

    REFERENCES


    [1] “As we shall see, a number of treaties, UN resolutions, and the legislative and judicial practice of States evince the formation of a general opinio juris in the international community, accompanied by a practice consistent with such opinio, to the effect that a customary rule of international law regarding the international crime of terrorism, at least in time of peace, has indeed emerged. This customary rule requires the following three key elements: (i) the perpetration of a criminal act (such as murder, kidnapping, hostage-taking, arson, and so on), or threatening such an act; (ii) the intent to spread fear among the population (which would generally entail the creation of public danger) or directly or indirectly coerce a national or international authority to take some action, or to refrain from taking it; (iii) when the act involves a transnational element.” (Interlocutory Decision, 2011, para. 85).

    [2] Enders, Walter, Todd Sandler, and Khusrav Gaibulloev (2011). “Domestic versus transnational terrorism: Data, decomposition, and dynamics”. Journal of Peace Research (3 ed.). 48 (3): 319–337. doi:10.1177/0022343311398926. S2CID 37430122

    [3] Part of ‘UNITED NATIONS OFFICE ON DRUGS AND CRIME’ in EDUCATION FOR JUSTICE UNIVERSITY MODULE SERIES, Counter-Terrorism; Module 1 “INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM”

    [4] Part of ‘UNITED NATIONS OFFICE ON DRUGS AND CRIME’ in EDUCATION FOR JUSTICE UNIVERSITY MODULE SERIES, Counter-Terrorism; Module 1 “INTRODUCTION TO INTERNATIONAL TERRORISM”

    [5] ‘Press Trust of India’- News Article published on 25 Sep, 2021, 7:38 pm by ‘Greater Kashmir’ News Blog with title, “US, India together in fight against global terrorism”.

    Disclaimer: The opinions and views in the articles and research papers published on this website; are personal and independent opinions of the author. The website is not responsible for them.


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