Taliban wants positive relationship with India, welcomes New Delhi's contribution in Afghanistan

AbRaj

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Dec 6, 2017
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Not the first time. BoJoP has a habit of inviting ISI chiefs to inspect and survey Indian military installations. Inviting NSA is the next logical step. Probably they are also considering appointing a permanent ISI representative in each command for better coordination of……………well attacks on military and civilians.
They use patriotism and nationalism as a tool to garner votes in local election.They are making mockery of these two words and emotions attached to them.
 
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RISING SUN

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Not the first time. BoJoP has a habit of inviting ISI chiefs to inspect and survey Indian military installations. Inviting NSA is the next logical step. Probably they are also considering appointing a permanent ISI representative in each command for better coordination of……………well attacks on military and civilians.
They use patriotism and nationalism as a tool to garner votes in local election.They are making mockery of these two words and emotions attached to them.
Same feeling. Congress, NCP, Communists and others do it covertly and BJP etc do it outright in front of our eyes and despite seeing everything we can't do a zilch!
 

screambowl

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Dec 19, 2017
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You can build around Afghanistan. Central Asia region. Pakistan has already started doing that to check mate any Indian move there, as always Indians are thakele budde. Pakistanis can think one step ahead why can't Indian. Or Indians are obsessed with showing their debating skills on forums and TV shows and news hours but in the name of action and decision making 'NIL'.

this was two weeks ago.


Written By: Sidhant Sibal
WION New Delhi Published: Dec 12, 2021, 10:14 AM(IST)

All 5 central Asian countries- Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan are being invited by New Delhi as the Republic day guest.


This is the first time that all central Asian countries will be present as the guest and the second time when so many countries will be invited together after 2018 when ASEAN was invited.


.........................................

Koi tou haey jo ghoom raha hai yahan forum pay 😍
 

RISING SUN

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Afghanistan: To keep foot in diplomatic door, Delhi opens window​

By sending the first consignment of medicines to Afghanistan, New Delhi has made its intent clear: it wishes to open a window to the new Taliban-ruled Afghanistan and put its foot in the diplomatic door.

The political call to differentiate between the Taliban regime and the people of Afghanistan was taken a while ago: that Delhi will reach out to the people of Afghanistan with essential supplies through the United Nations and its agencies. Medicines via the World Health Organisation and
foodgrains through the World Food Programme.

However, making the distinction between the “government” and the “people” of Afghanistan is easier said than done.

Given how tightly the Taliban controls access to UN agencies, New Delhi has had to carefully engage with Taliban officials in calibrated, behind-the-scenes conversations over the last four months or so, sources said.
India was among the last of influential regional players to reach out to Afghanistan in August end — when Indian envoy in Qatar Deepak Mittal officially met Taliban’s Doha office representatives, led by Sher Mohammed Stanekzai (an Indian Military Academy, Dehradun pass out and later became the Deputy Foreign minister).
The Indian Express has learnt that the Taliban, since that meeting, underlined that “India’s help is more than welcome, when it comes to humanitarian assistance and development projects”.
India.jpg
Medicines for Indira Gandhi Children Hospital, Kabul (PTI)

In fact, at the meeting between Mittal and Stanekzai, Taliban officials clearly said that India’s projects — to the tune of $3 billion in the last 20 years — had been “extremely productive” and they would like “India to stay invested in Afghanistan”.

Officials underline that the Indian embassy’s engagement with local warlords in Taliban-dominated provinces had created some goodwill in the 34 provinces.

But the key question for the establishment has been: how to engage with the Taliban-ruled Afghanistan without compromising on India’s red lines.

Those red lines were spelt out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a speech on September 17. For the first time since Taliban captured power in Afghanistan, Modi raised questions on the “acceptability” of the new “system” in Afghanistan flagging concerns that the change of power has not been inclusive and took place without negotiations.

He had also said that “representation of all sections of Afghan society, including women and minorities, is also important”. He had called upon the international community to take a decision on the critical question of the “recognition” of the new dispensation in a “thoughtful and collective manner”.

This set the bar quite high for India’s diplomatic establishment to work with the new Afghanistan. The Taliban in Kabul, however, were pragmatic. They did not react to Modi’s remarks and kept putting out statements — when asked — that help from the neighbours is welcome.

One ball was set rolling through the regional security dialogue of the National Security Advisors in early October and the National Security Council Secretariat organised the meeting of NSAs from eight countries including Russia and Iran on November 10.

This was the first piece of India’s engagement towards Afghanistan from a regional security paradigm. Without naming Taliban even once during his intervention at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation on September 17, Modi had said that if instability and fundamentalism continues in Afghanistan, it “will lead to terrorist and extremist ideologies all over the world”.

All these issues were taken up during the Indian NSA-hosted conference – China and Pakistan, as anticipated, had skipped it – and a message was sent to the Taliban.


Simultaneously, in early October, India made its move to send wheat and life-saving medicines to the people of Afghanistan, and a request was sent to the Pakistan government since it involved 5,000 trucks carrying 50,000 metric tons of wheat criss-crossing the heart of Pakistan’s territory.
This was conveyed to the Taliban at the Moscow talks in the third week of October with Delhi asking the Taliban leaders to urge their “Pakistani brothers” to facilitate access.

This put Islamabad in a spot as it projects itself as the main benefactor for Afghanistan. So, when the Taliban Foreign minister visited Islamabad and met Pakistan PM, Imran Khan had little choice but to declare that he would “favourably consider” the proposal to allow humanitarian aid from India to Afghanistan.

For Delhi, this dual track of engaging with the Taliban and the people is a complex exercise as India’s security establishment is headed by NSA Ajit Doval and diplomatic strategy by External Affairs minister S Jaishankar.

Given how many European, Gulf and even east Asian powers like Japan, are starting to engage with the Taliban, officials here said engagement with Taliban cannot be left to “inactivity” and “let-the-river-take-its-own-course” approach.

Sending these medicines is the first step in becoming part of the diplomatic process unfolding in Doha and Kabul.

For Delhi, however, challenges in helping the “people of Afghanistan” remain: the question of granting e-visas to Afghans (students, professionals, friends of India; only 200 e-visas have been granted so far); maintenance of Indian-built projects like the Salma Dam or the Pul-
e-Khumri power plant.

From a security perspective, Delhi’s worries include the US leaving sophisticated weaponry behind in Afghanistan and the “risk of instability.”

But, for now, for that “limited purpose” of humanitarian help, s with medical supplies, Delhi has made it clear it’s not shy engaging with the Taliban.
 

RISING SUN

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Dec 3, 2017
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Afghanistan: To keep foot in diplomatic door, Delhi opens window​

By sending the first consignment of medicines to Afghanistan, New Delhi has made its intent clear: it wishes to open a window to the new Taliban-ruled Afghanistan and put its foot in the diplomatic door.

The political call to differentiate between the Taliban regime and the people of Afghanistan was taken a while ago: that Delhi will reach out to the people of Afghanistan with essential supplies through the United Nations and its agencies. Medicines via the World Health Organisation and foodgrains through the World Food Programme.

However, making the distinction between the “government” and the “people” of Afghanistan is easier said than done.

Given how tightly the Taliban controls access to UN agencies, New Delhi has had to carefully engage with Taliban officials in calibrated, behind-the-scenes conversations over the last four months or so, sources said.

India was among the last of influential regional players to reach out to Afghanistan in August end — when Indian envoy in Qatar Deepak Mittal officially met Taliban’s Doha office representatives, led by Sher Mohammed Stanekzai (an Indian Military Academy, Dehradun pass out and later became the Deputy Foreign minister).

The Indian Express has learnt that the Taliban, since that meeting, underlined that “India’s help is more than welcome, when it comes to humanitarian assistance and development projects”.
India.jpg
Medicines for Indira Gandhi Children Hospital, Kabul (PTI)

In fact, at the meeting between Mittal and Stanekzai, Taliban officials clearly said that India’s projects — to the tune of $3 billion in the last 20 years — had been “extremely productive” and they would like “India to stay invested in Afghanistan”.

Officials underline that the Indian embassy’s engagement with local warlords in Taliban-dominated provinces had created some goodwill in the 34 provinces.

But the key question for the establishment has been: how to engage with the Taliban-ruled Afghanistan without compromising on India’s red lines.

Those red lines were spelt out by Prime Minister Narendra Modi in a speech on September 17. For the first time since Taliban captured power in Afghanistan, Modi raised questions on the “acceptability” of the new “system” in Afghanistan flagging concerns that the change of power has not been inclusive and took place without negotiations.

He had also said that “representation of all sections of Afghan society, including women and minorities, is also important”. He had called upon the international community to take a decision on the critical question of the “recognition” of the new dispensation in a “thoughtful and collective manner”.

This set the bar quite high for India’s diplomatic establishment to work with the new Afghanistan. The Taliban in Kabul, however, were pragmatic. They did not react to Modi’s remarks and kept putting out statements — when asked — that help from the neighbours is welcome.

One ball was set rolling through the regional security dialogue of the National Security Advisors in early October and the National Security Council Secretariat organised the meeting of NSAs from eight countries including Russia and Iran on November 10.

This was the first piece of India’s engagement towards Afghanistan from a regional security paradigm. Without naming Taliban even once during his intervention at the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation on September 17, Modi had said that if instability and fundamentalism continues in Afghanistan, it “will lead to terrorist and extremist ideologies all over the world”.

All these issues were taken up during the Indian NSA-hosted conference – China and Pakistan, as anticipated, had skipped it – and a message was sent to the Taliban.

Simultaneously, in early October, India made its move to send wheat and life-saving medicines to the people of Afghanistan, and a request was sent to the Pakistan government since it involved 5,000 trucks carrying 50,000 metric tons of wheat criss-crossing the heart of Pakistan’s territory.
This was conveyed to the Taliban at the Moscow talks in the third week of October with Delhi asking the Taliban leaders to urge their “Pakistani brothers” to facilitate access.

This put Islamabad in a spot as it projects itself as the main benefactor for Afghanistan. So, when the Taliban Foreign minister visited Islamabad and met Pakistan PM, Imran Khan had little choice but to declare that he would “favourably consider” the proposal to allow humanitarian aid from India to Afghanistan.

For Delhi, this dual track of engaging with the Taliban and the people is a complex exercise as India’s security establishment is headed by NSA Ajit Doval and diplomatic strategy by External Affairs minister S Jaishankar.

Given how many European, Gulf and even east Asian powers like Japan, are starting to engage with the Taliban, officials here said engagement with Taliban cannot be left to “inactivity” and “let-the-river-take-its-own-course” approach.

Sending these medicines is the first step in becoming part of the diplomatic process unfolding in Doha and Kabul.

For Delhi, however, challenges in helping the “people of Afghanistan” remain: the question of granting e-visas to Afghans (students, professionals, friends of India; only 200 e-visas have been granted so far); maintenance of Indian-built projects like the Salma Dam or the Pul-e-Khumri power plant.

From a security perspective, Delhi’s worries include the US leaving sophisticated weaponry behind in Afghanistan and the “risk of instability.”

“But, for now, for that “limited purpose” of humanitarian help, with medical supplies, Delhi has made it clear it’s not shy of engaging with the Taliban.”
 

_Anonymous_

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Dec 4, 2017
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Mumbai
They dream of reviving the Durrani empire ⚓
A lot of Pakistanis share that dream too except they want such a union under their leadership or to be more precise under the leadership of the Punjabi Muslims something which no Pashtun would agree to for the latter not only has a poor opinion of the former but actually despises them.
 
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RISING SUN

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Indian team in Kabul for meetings with the Taliban, oversee distribution of aid​

NEW DELHI: India has sent a team, led by the external affairs ministry’s point person on Afghanistan, to Kabul for meetings with senior members of the Taliban and to oversee humanitarian relief efforts, the first such visit since the collapse of the Ashraf Ghani government last August.

India, like other countries, has not recognised the Taliban setup in Afghanistan, though there have been both back channel contacts and meetings with the group in neutral venues such as the United Arab Emirates. India ended its diplomatic presence in Afghanistan following the Taliban takeover and evacuated thousands of nationals from the war-torn country in civilian and military flights.

The team, led by joint secretary JP Singh, who heads the Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran desk in the external affairs ministry, will “meet the senior members of the Taliban and hold discussions on India’s humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan” while in Kabul, the ministry said in a statement.

The team will oversee the delivery of India’s humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan and meet representatives of international organisations involved in the distribution of aid. The team is also expected to visit various places where Indian programmes and projects are being implemented.

People familiar with the matter said the visit, which was not announced in advance, will be short in duration and didn’t materialise “out of the blue” – an indication that considerable planning had gone into the effort. It is understood that the Taliban have provided security guarantees for travel by the Indian team.

It was not immediately clear which Taliban leaders the Indian team will meet, or the locations it will visit to see India-backed development projects.

Former ambassador Vivek Katju, who served as the Indian envoy to Kabul during 2002-05, welcomed the visit by the Indian team. “At long last, we have taken a sensible step. I hope this will lead to a permanent Indian presence in Kabul at a suitable level,” he said.

Following the Taliban takeover last August, India’s ambassador to Qatar, Deepak Mittal, met top Taliban negotiator Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai at the Indian embassy in Doha in September 2021 – the first officially acknowledged meeting between the two sides in recent years.

However, even before the Taliban takeover, the two sides had opened channels of communication and there were several instances of contact between the Indian side and top Taliban leaders, such as Stanekzai and Abdul Ghani Baradar, in third countries. These contacts were largely driven by Indian security officials.

Though India shuttered its embassy in Kabul in August 2021 and its consulates in Herat, Kandahar, Jalalabad and Mazar-e-Sharif in the months and years before the Taliban takeover, the country has responded to the humanitarian needs of the Afghan people, both due to the Covid-19 pandemic and the economic collapse that followed the ouster of the elected civilian government.

India has dispatched several shipments of humanitarian aid, consisting of 20,000 tonnes of wheat, 13 tonnes of medicines, 500,000 doses of Covid-19 vaccines and winter clothing. It has pledged to send 50,000 tonnes of wheat, though deliveries have been delayed because of complications created by Pakistani authorities while granting access to land routes for ferrying supplies.

The Indian consignments were handed over to the Indira Gandhi children’s hospital in Kabul and UN agencies such as the World Health Organization (WHO) and World Food Programme (WFP). India is in the process of shipping more medical assistance and food grains to Afghanistan.

The external affairs ministry emphasised that the humanitarian aid was part of India’s developmental partnership with “Afghan brethren”, and included one million doses of India-made Covaxin vaccines gifted to Iran to administer to Afghan refugees. India has also assisted UNICEF by supplying almost 60 million doses of polio vaccines and two tonnes of essential medicines.

“India has historical and civilisational ties with the Afghan people and these longstanding linkages will continue to guide our approach,” the ministry said.

India’s developmental and humanitarian assistance has received widespread appreciation in Afghanistan, including from the Taliban leadership, which has noted the importance of maintaining ties with New Delhi, and even called for the resumption of an Indian diplomatic presence in Kabul.

In a signal of New Delhi’s continuing commitment to the war-torn country, India allocated ₹200 crore as aid for Afghanistan in its budget for 2022-23. The amount will be used to meet expenses related to projects that India has been implementing in Afghanistan, to provide relief materials and humanitarian assistance and to cover existing schemes such as scholarships for Afghan students.

Following the US invasion of Afghanistan in 2001, India emerged as the largest regional donor for the country, with pledges of almost $3 billion. India has executed several major infrastructure projects, including the new parliament building, the 218-km-long Zaranj-Delaram highway and the $290-million Friendship Dam. However, India-funded projects came to a standstill after the Taliban takeover.
 

RISING SUN

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Woman diplomat part of Indian team meeting Taliban leaders in Kabul​

India’s inclusion of woman diplomat in the team meeting Taliban leaders in Kabul has come against the backdrop of repeated calls for protecting the rights of Afghan women and their inclusion in all aspects of life.

Indian Foreign Service officer Deepti Jharwal is part of the Indian team meeting Taliban leaders in Kabul, Afghanistan.


Indian Foreign Service officer Deepti Jharwal is part of the Indian team meeting Taliban leaders in Kabul, Afghanistan.

NEW DELHI: Against the backdrop of repeated calls for protecting the rights of Afghan women and their inclusion in all aspects of life, a woman diplomat was part of the Indian team that travelled to Kabul for meetings with senior Taliban leaders.

Deepti Jharwal, who is desk officer for Afghanistan in the crucial Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran division of the external affairs ministry, was in the small team sent to Kabul on Thursday to make an assessment of the delivery of India’s humanitarian assistance for the Afghan people.
An officer of the 2011 batch of the Indian Foreign Service, Jharwal participated in a meeting with Taliban acting foreign minister Amir Khan Muttaqi and visited the Habibia High School in Kabul that was renovated by the Indian government some years ago. Jharwal has also done a stint in the Indian embassy in Italy in the past.

The team, which was led by joint secretary JP Singh, who heads the Pakistan-Afghanistan-Iran division, met senior members of the Taliban and held discussions on India’s humanitarian assistance. The team, which included representatives from security agencies, also toured a children’s hospital, a school and a power plant backed with Indian support.

People familiar with the matter said the woman diplomat’s inclusion in the team was an apparent signal to the Taliban setup on the need to ensure inclusion of Afghan women and children in all aspects of life. The people also pointed out women officials were conspicuous by their absence from delegations sent by several Western countries to Kabul.

Jharwal figured in several photos issued by the external affairs ministry of the Indian team’s meetings and interactions in Kabul, though she was wearing a mask in all but one of them. In one image, she is seen sitting diagonally opposite Muttaqi. She was not seen in any photos issued by the Taliban of the Indian team’s engagements.

Deepti Jharwal figured in several photos issued by the external affairs ministry. She was not seen in any photos issued by the Taliban of the Indian team’s engagements.


Deepti Jharwal figured in several photos issued by the external affairs ministry. She was not seen in any photos issued by the Taliban of the Indian team’s engagements.

Since coming to power in August last year, the Taliban have instituted a de facto ban on education for teenage girls and allowed female university students to attend classes under a gender-segregated system. Restrictions on women have increased in recent months, barring them from undertaking long distance journeys without a male guardian and directing women TV anchors to wear masks.

Besides Muttaqi, the Indian team also met acting deputy foreign minister Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, who “assured the Indian side that Afghanistan, considering its balanced foreign policy, seeks enhanced political, economic and cultural relations with India as an important regional country”, according to a Taliban spokesman.

Stanekzai thanked the Indian government for its humanitarian aid and assured the Indian team that “Afghan-Indian relations would move forward based on mutual respect and joint bilateral legitimate interests, and would not be influenced by other countries’ inter-rivalry”, the spokesman said.

Singh noted that India wants to assist Afghanistan with infrastructure and small projects, capacity building, scholarships and humanitarian aid.

The Taliban spokesman said the two sides stressed the continuation of such meetings to strengthen relations.