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Foreig Secretary meets Afghan Prez; other Afghan leaders


Press Trust of India New Delhi
Foreign Secretary Vijay Gokhale called on President Ashraf Ghani and held meetings with the top brass of the Afghan government during which he conveyed India's unflinching support for a peaceful, stable and inclusive Afghanistan.

During his two-day Afghan visit that began yesterday, Gokhale handed over a letter from Prime Minister Narendra Modi to Ghani, the external affairs ministry said.

In his meetings with Afghan leaders and addressing a meeting of 'Kabul Process', Gokhale emphasised India's position that there can be no compromise with terrorism and action must be taken against those who provide safe havens and sanctuaries to terrorists, in a clear reference to Pakistan.

The foreign secretary met Afghan National Security Adviser Hanif Atmar, Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani and Deputy Foreign Minister Hekmat Karzai and attended the second meeting of the Kabul Process on 'Peace and Security Cooperation'.

The external affairs ministry said that in his meetings with the Afghan leadership and Statement at the Kabul Process meeting, Gokhale conveyed India's support to Afghan government to build a peaceful, stable, democratic and pluralistic Afghanistan, "free from the shadow of terrorism."

It said the foreign secretary conveyed that India welcomed the Afghan Government's call to armed groups to cease violence and join national peace and reconciliation process that would protect the rights of all Afghans, including the women, children and the minorities.

"Further, there can be no compromise with terrorism and action must be taken against those who continue down the path of violence and those who finance them and provide safe havens and sanctuaries," the MEA said.

It said the leadership of Afghanistan deeply appreciated the continued Indian support for peace, development and prosperity of Afghanistan, including the efforts to operationalise Chahbahar Port and establishment of Air Freight Corridors between various cities of India and Afghanistan.

"It was agreed to work together for implementation of the New Development Partnership," said the MEA.

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First Published: Feb 28 2018 | 8:55 PM IST

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