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Featured Afghanistan's Abdullah Abdullah meets NSA Doval, CDS Gen Rawat to discuss peace process

Mighty Lion

Oct 3, 2018

From the LINK provided in the aforementioned tweet:

Afghanistan's Abdullah Abdullah Meets NSA Doval, CDS Gen Rawat To Discuss Peace Process

Head of Afghanistan's peace council Abdullah Abdullah met with India's National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and other senior officials in New Delhi

The Head of Afghanistan's peace council Abdullah Abdullah met with India's National Security Adviser Ajit Doval and other senior officials in New Delhi on Wednesday and discussed the peace process in the war-torn country.

Abdullah arrived in the national capital on Tuesday on a five-day visit during which he will hold also talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi and External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar.

In a statement on Twitter, Abdullah said Doval has assured him of India’s full support for the peace efforts, and that any peace settlement acceptable to Afghans, will have the support of New Delhi. "He [Ajit Doval] further stated that his country is in favor an independent, democratic, sovereign and peaceful Afghanistan, where no terrorists can operate. I thanked India for the invitation, its continued support for Afghanistan, and its constructive role in peace efforts," Abdullah said.

The Afghan delegation also met Chief of Defence Staff General Bipin Rawat and foreign secretary Harsh Shringla. There has been no immediate statement on the meeting from the Indian side.

The visit of the influential Afghan leader to India comes in the midst of peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban in Doha. Afghan officials said the visit is part of the efforts to build a regional consensus and support for the Afghan peace process. The Taliban and the Afghan government are holding direct talks for the first time to end 19 years of war that has killed tens of thousands of people and ravaged various parts of the country.

Last month, another influential Afghan leader Marshal Abdul Rashid Dostum had visited India.

Close eye on peace process

India has been a major stakeholder in the peace and stability of Afghanistan. It has already invested USD two billion in aid and reconstruction activities in the country. India has been supporting a national peace and reconciliation process which is Afghan-led, Afghan-owned, and Afghan-controlled.

On September 12, an Indian delegation attended the inaugural ceremony of the intra-Afghan negotiations in Doha while Jaishankar joined it through video conference.

India has been keenly following the evolving political situation after the US signed a peace deal with the Taliban in February. The deal provided for the withdrawal of American troops from Afghanistan, effectively drawing curtains to Washington's 18-year war in the country. The US has lost over 2,400 soldiers in Afghanistan since late 2001.

New Delhi has also been maintaining that care should be taken to ensure that any such process does not lead to any "ungoverned spaces" where terrorists and their proxies can relocate, in a clear reference to Afghan border areas adjoining Pakistan where anti-India groups have flourished under the Pakistan Army's and ISI's care.
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