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Amid the second round of intra-Afghan talks between the Afghanistan delegates and Taliban, India’s National Security Advisor, Ajit Doval held talks with Afghan officials at the Presidential Palace in Kabul, Afghanistan on January 13.

According to the statement released by the Palace, the President of Afghanistan; Ashraf Ghani told Doval that “the Afghans security forces are the righteous pillars of Afghanista’s stability and are fighting in the front lines against the regional and global terrorism”, as per Tolo news.

Ajit Doval also met Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, Abdullah Abdullah, who took to social media and said “we exchanged views on the Peace Process, the beginning of the second round (intra-Afghan) talks, and the role of India in establishing peace in Afghanistan”, as per Hindu news.  

Apart from these delegates, Doval also met former Afghan President, Hamid Karzai and spoke about India’s and Afghanistan’s strategic relations, the peace process and their cooperation on the ongoing Afghan peace process in Doha.

From the past two decades, India has been constantly investing in the peace and stability in Afghanistan.

India’s development programme in Afghanistan is centred on five pillars, “large infrastructure projects; human resources development and capacity building; humanitarian assistance; high impact community development projects; and enhancing trade and investment through air and land connectivity.”

India is also extending its support to Afghanistan government on the ongoing intra-Afghan peace talks and also believed that the peace process should be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled.

This visit by the National Security Advisor has invited attention in Kabul and took place exactly when the Afghan peace process between the Taliban and Afghan delegates is very poised, especially in the wake of in violent attacks blamed on the militant group.

Asia Pacific countries are closely watching the situation with the new elected President, Joe Biden in the US. This administration may or might not make alterations to their approach towards Afghanistan.

[Research compilation by Reshma Chitiprolu]

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