Terming terrorism the “single largest threat to peace and stability”, External Affairs Minister (EAM) Sushma Swaraj has emphasised on the need of elimination of the global menace in all its forms. While addressing the South Asian Association for Regional Cooperation (SAARC) Informal Council of Ministers Meeting which was held on Thursday on the sidelines of the 73rd United Nations Security Assembly, the EAM said, “Terrorism remains the single largest threat to peace and stability in our region, and indeed in the world. It is necessary that we eliminate the scourge of terrorism in all its forms, without any discrimination, and end the ecosystem of its support.” She further said that the environment of peace and security is essential for regional cooperation to progress and achieve economic development and prosperity. The minister also stated that the number of threats and incidents that endanger South Asia’s are on the rise. She also talked about the need for regional cooperation between the countries and said, “Regional cooperation can only be successful if it meets the expectations of the people. The world is moving ahead to become more integrated and connected where movement of goods and people is becoming easier with each passing day.” Swaraj further asserted that SAARC needs to deliver on its commitment of trade liberalisation under the South Asian Free Trade Agreement. “SAARC needs to deliver on its commitments or risk being left behind. To realise our immense potential for trade, it is imperative that the further trade liberalization under South Asian Free Trade Agreement (SAFTA) and operationalisation of SAARC Agreement on Trade in Services (SATIS) are done at the earliest,” she said. Talking about the energy needs of the countries, Swaraj revealed that SAARC Framework Agreement for Energy Cooperation which was signed at the 18th SAARC Summit has not yet entered in to force due to non-ratification by some member states. The EAM underscored that India is committed to regional cooperation and attaches the highest priority to the development and prosperity, under the “Neighbourhood First” policy. She added that India is also committed to sharing the fruits of its economic, scientific and technological progress with the South Asian community.