BRICS nations discuss counter-terrorism, cyber and energy security

New Delhi, Sep 15 (IANS) BRICS High Representatives responsible for national security met here on Thursday and discussed issues of counter-terrorism, cyber security and energy security among others ahead of the BRICS Summit next month in Goa.

It was the sixth such meeting of those in charge of national security in Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa (BRICS) and was presided over by India’s National Security Adviser Ajit Doval.

India assumed chairmanship of BRICS this year and will host the 8th Summit meeting in Goa on October 15-16.

In Thursday’s meeting, the delegation from Brazil was led by Gen. Sergio Westphalen Etchegoyen, Minister of State, and Head of the Cabinet for Institutional Security, that of Russia by Nikolai P. Patrushev, Secretary of the country’s Security Council, that of China by Yang Jiechi, State Councillor, and that of South Africa by Mbangiseni David Mahlobo, Minister of State Security.

“Acknowledging the positive contribution of the BRICS grouping on important global issues, they deliberated on security issues such as counter-terrorism, cyber security and energy security,” the External Affairs Ministry said in a statement following the meeting.

“They also exchanged assessments of recent developments in the West Asia and North Africa (WANA) region,” it stated.

In the area of cyber and information security, the participants agreed to strengthen joint efforts on enhancing cyber security by sharing information and best practices, combating cyber crimes, improving cooperation between technical and law enforcement agencies including joint cyber security research and development capacity building.

“The High Representatives encouraged cooperation and exchanging of best practices, expertise, information and knowledge on counter-terrorism issues,” the statement said.

“In this context, they welcomed the first meeting of the BRICS Working Group on Counter-Terrorism that was held a day before,” it said.

“They also agreed to expand BRICS counter-terrorism cooperation further to include measures for denying terrorists access to finance and terror-hardware such as equipment, arms and ammunition. They underscored the need for a global legal regime to deal with the global menace of terrorism.”

The participants also agreed to explore a regular energy dialogue between BRICS countries in order to discuss long-term and medium-term energy security issues.

“While highlighting the need for resolution of outstanding disputes in the WANA region through dialogue, peaceful means and in accordance with international law and the principles of the UN charter, the BRICS High Representatives also agreed to pool BRICS’s efforts to counter terrorism and violent extremism emanating from the region,” the statement continued.

“The High Representatives concurred on a BRICS Forum to progressively consolidate cooperation and exchanges among respective agencies in security related fields.”

–IANS

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