New Delhi, May 26 (PTI) US special representative for Afghanistan Thomas West paid a quiet visit to India during which both sides reviewed the overall situation in the war-torn country including the humanitarian crisis.
In a series of tweets on Thursday, West complimented India for providing critical humanitarian aid to Afghanistan and said Washington will continue to partner with New Delhi and others in the region to advance “shared goals”. On Wednesday, the American official held talks with JP Singh, the external affairs ministry’s point person for Pakistan, Afghanistan and Iran.
“Many thanks to @MEAIndia Joint Secretary J.P. Singh for hosting me and my team for detailed discussions on Afghanistan policy yesterday in New Delhi,” West tweeted. “India is providing critical humanitarian aid, has interests to protect, brings enormous capability and experience to supporting Afghan people. We’ll continue to partner with India and others in the region to advance shared goals,” he added.
West also met Afghanistan’s former chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation (HCNR) Abdullah Abdullah. “A real pleasure to see Afghan leader @DrabdullahCE today after many months. Welcome Taliban’s good decision to let him see family and return,” West said. “Discussed issues critical to Afghanistan’s future and relations with int’l community: need for political process, human rights abuses, women’s essential role in society, humanitarian situation, and terrorism threats,” he said.
Abdullah’s family stays in India. He was allowed earlier this month to visit India to spend some time with his family. India has been concerned about the developments in Afghanistan. It hosted a regional dialogue on Afghanistan in November that was attended by NSAs of Russia, Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.
The participating countries vowed to work towards ensuring that Afghanistan does not become a safe haven for global terrorism and called for the formation of an “open and truly inclusive” government in Kabul with representation from all sections of Afghan society. A declaration released at the end of the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan said Afghan territory should not be used for sheltering, training, planning or financing any terrorist acts.
In the last few months, India supplied several consignments of humanitarian aid to Afghanistan. India has been pitching for providing unimpeded humanitarian aid to Afghanistan to address the unfolding humanitarian crisis in the country.
It has not yet recognised the Taliban regime in Afghanistan.