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Shyam Hari asked: What is the difference between the lexicons ‘Anti-terrorism’ and ‘Counter-terrorism’?

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  • Vivek Chadha replies: On the face of it, both “anti-terrorism” and “counter-terrorism” seem similar and the difference borders on semantics. While the official glossary in the Indian context does not differentiate the two, international writings do highlight essential differences.

    The primary difference between the two derives from the former being reactive and defensive while the latter includes proactive and offensive measures in terms of the steps that it involves to fight terrorism. As an illustration, anti-terrorism includes legislations that aim at framing laws for prosecuting terrorists. On the other hand, an operation of the kind undertaken in Myanmar to pre-empt a future terrorist strike can be described as counter-terrorism.

    Posted on August 03, 2015