Washington, Mar 13: US has said  Jaish-e-Mohammed chief Masood Azhar meets the criteria to be designated as a global terrorist. It said  not doing so is against regional stability and peace,.

“Azhar is the founder and the leader of the JeM, and he meets the criteria for designation by the United Nations,” State Department Deputy Spokesperson Robert Palladino told reporters

The statement comes on the eve of the UN Security Council making a crucial decision in this regard.

The JeM, headed by the 50-year-old Azhar, carried out many terror strikes in India and the latest was suicide attack on CRPF in Pulwama which claimed the lives of 44 personnel.

In the aftermath of the February 14 Pulwama attack, three permanent members of the UNSC –- the United States, Britain and France –- have moved a resolution to designate Azhar as a global terrorist.

India has stepped up pressure. US National Security Adviser John Bolton said that Pakistan has assured the US it will deal “firmly” with terrorists operating from the country  This assurance was given by Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi during a phone call on Monday.

Bolton said in a tweet on a day when Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale called on US Secretary of State Mike Pompeo in Washington. Several previous attempts by these three countries inside the UN Security Council were blocked by China, the all-weather ally of Pakistan. There are however indications that China may not veto the move.(Agencies)

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