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India pledges to integrate partners for Afghan peace




India pledged on Tuesday(May 7,2019) to collaborate with key associates to assist agent a stable peace in Afghanistan.

New Delhi’s press release followed a check out to India on Monday by US special envoy for peace in Afghanistan, Zalmay Khalilzad, wherein he delivered an update on the latest round of discussions with the Taliban, conducted in the Qatari capital Doha.

Khalilzad met Indian Minister of External Affairs Sushma Swaraj and also briefed her about the constant process to realize ways to end the long-running struggle.

In a tweet after their meeting the Indian Ministry of External Affairs stated Swaraj and Khalilzad have discussed the “role of all regional stakeholders in bringing peace and development in Afghanistan. India will work with key partners in the days ahead.”

It was Khalilzad’s second trip to India in the last 4 months and it happened among increasing concerns in New Delhi over the U.S.’ exit gate policy for Afghanistan.

“After 18 years in Afghanistan, we fully understand the US sentiment for an exit policy,” Indian ambassador to the U.S., Harsh Vardhan Shringla, said the American Fox News channel in recent times.

“There is a good chance that the peace process could succeed. However, if it’s done in a hasty manner and too many concessions are conceded to the Taliban, it could lead to a situation similar to the pre-9/11 period, and so it has to be carefully considered,” Shringla included.

Previously this year, New Delhi pressured US President Donald Trump’s administration to not take out its troops from Afghanistan without setting up an elected “political structure” to govern the nation.

India continues to be a strong backer of Afghan President Ashraf Ghani’s government in Kabul and also supports his argument that peace talks must be directed and possessed by Afghanistan.

Foreign policy consultants claim Khalilzad’s visit ensures that New Delhi’s interests in Afghanistan need to be protected.

“Basically, the US has not involved India in a very significant way in the talks, but now they are gradually introducing India into that conversation,” stated Harsh V. Pant of New Delhi-based think tank Observer Research Foundation (ORF).

“Washington recognizes India’s significant stakes in Afghanistan and realizes that its interests have to be protected in some way,” Pant informed Arab Press.

He asserted Khalilzad’s visit is also an attempt to “build a regional consensus before putting in place a political structure in Kabul if the discussions result in fruition. Any specific political arrangement in Kabul will require a regional consensus to ensure no one in the region has an upper hand.”

However, Pant will not think of any immediate stepping-up of India’s role in the peace procedure.

“India’s isolation at the working out deals table is the results of the approach it implemented in 2001, which was to concentrate only on capacity building and also soft-power push. It skipped the bus in the initial years by not practicing the hard-power game,” he added in.

Dhruva Jaishankar of research group the Brookings Institution, depending in New Delhi, said very little should be read into Khalilzad’s trip. “It is an attempt to keep India in the loop regarding the negotiations which are taking place in Doha.

“The reality is that India is a major stakeholder in Afghanistan; it is the fifth-largest aid provider in terms of civilian support,” included Jaishankar.


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