Active Stocks
Fri Dec 01 2023 15:59:55
  1. Tata Steel share price
  2. 129.95 1.56%
  1. Reliance Industries share price
  2. 2,393.45 0.72%
  1. NTPC share price
  2. 269.05 2.97%
  1. ICICI Bank share price
  2. 946.35 1.19%
  1. HDFC Bank share price
  2. 1,555.5 -0.22%
Business News/ News / World/  India in touch with various stakeholders in Afghan peace process
Back Back

India in touch with various stakeholders in Afghan peace process

Foreign ministry said India’s ties with Afghanistan were historical and New Delhi had been engaging ‘Afghans across ethnicities’

Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani. (AP)Premium
Afghanistan's President Ashraf Ghani. (AP)

India on Thursday said it was in touch with various stakeholders in Afghan peace process in response to questions whether New Delhi had reached out to the hardline Sunni rebel Taliban group which has been fighting the internationally recognized Ashraf Ghani government.

When asked about news reports that New Delhi had established contact with the Taliban, Indian foreign ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said that India’s ties with Afghanistan were historical and New Delhi had been engaging “Afghans across ethnicities." The Taliban belong to the dominant Pashtun group which accounts for about 50% of the country’s population. The reference to “Afghans across ethnicities" could refer to India being in touch with Uzbek, Tajik and Hazara origin leaders within Afghanistan like Rashid Dostum and others. Some of these leaders have visited India in the past.

“As a friendly neighbour, we are concerned about peace and security in Afghanistan and the region. We support all peace initiatives and have been engaged with several stakeholders including regional countries," Bagchi said without stating clearly whether the stakeholders New Delhi had with included the Taliban.

“As you are aware, EAM (External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar) participated in the inaugural ceremony of the intra Afghan talks held in Doha last year," Bagchi said referring to Jaishankar virtually participating in the meet that heralded the start of peace talks between the Afghan government and the Taliban last year.

“A senior official delegation attended the talks in Doha. In the recent past, we have had visits by multiple Afghan leaders to India and we have also had official visits to Kabul. We are in touch with various stakeholders, as I said, in pursuance of our long term commitment towards development and reconstruction of Afghanistan," Bagchi said.

Some analysts say the use of the word “stake holders" gives it an air of ambiguity which could include the Taliban. Other analysts however say that given that Pakistan is the main backer of the Taliban and that Islamabad has tried to ensure that a Taliban takeover in Kabul to keep Indian influence to a minimum, it is unlikely that New Delhi would have had contacts with Taliban leaders who matter in Afghanistan. Still, given that the group will be part of a future power structure in Kabul, New Delhi may be looking to reach out to the group.

Milestone Alert!
Livemint tops charts as the fastest growing news website in the world 🌏 Click here to know more.

Catch all the Elections News, Business News, Market News, Breaking News Events and Latest News Updates on Live Mint. Download The Mint News App to get Daily Market Updates.
More Less
Updated: 10 Jun 2021, 09:10 PM IST
Next Story footLogo
Recommended For You
Switch to the Mint app for fast and personalized news - Get App