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Afghanistan: India looks to play ‘constructive’ role in Doha for political outcome | India News

In the middle of concerns over Taliban’s unrelenting military offensive in Afghanistan, aided apparently by international terrorists, India participated Thursday in a regional conference in Doha for expediting the Afghanistan peace talks.
India’s participation was significant as it had been kept out of the extended troika meeting just a day earlier of Russia, US, China and Pakistan on the deteriorating security situation in Afghanistan.
The conference was still on late on Thursday. Official sources said the Indian delegation was playing a constructive role in efforts underway to arrive at an agreement for a political outcome.
Despite its reservations about Taliban, India has supported all peace initiatives in recent times for a lasting political settlement through “an inclusive Afghan led, Afghan owned and Afghan controlled process”. A day ahead of the Doha meeting, the government reiterated in Parliament that India was in touch with various stakeholders within and outside Afghanistan for durable peace.
India was represented by MEA joint secretary J P Singh in the meeting. The participants apparently agreed that there can be no military solution to Afghanistan and that, according to Afghanistan’s chief negotiator Abdullah Abdullah, they won’t recognise any regime taking over the country by force. While the meeting was still on, Abdullah called for an immediate session of the UNSC to discuss the current developments in Afghanistan. The participants expressed concerns over increasing Taliban attacks, including war crimes and human rights abuses.
During his visit to India last week, Qatar special envoy Mutlaq bin Majed Al-Qahtani had emphasised on the need for an interim political arrangement that could end the violence in Afghanistan. Al-Qahtani had then also invited India for the ongoing meeting in Doha.
Qatar has also expressed concerns over the likelihood of external actors affecting the ongoing Doha peace process between the Taliban and the Afghan government. While Qatar has not specifically blamed Pakistan, the Afghan government has been a lot more forthcoming on the issue.
After the troika talks in Doha on Wednesday, Abdullah Abdullah said the continuation of the Taliban’s bloody attacks “in collusion with regional and international terrorists” will not only lead to a humanitarian catastrophe and a protracted war but also “exacerbate violent extremism and incite terrorists in the region” posing a threat to all.
While the MEA didn’t publicly comment on reports that terrorists in large numbers from Pakistan had joined the Taliban, India has repeatedly expressed concerns since the beginning of this year about the role of terror groups. During his visit to Kabul early this year, NSA Ajit Doval had emphasised on the need to rein in international terror groups for durable peace and stability in Afghanistan.



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