India, China come together to train Afghan diplomats

An understanding to launch a joint programme in Afghanistan was reached during an informal summit between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Chinese President Xi Jinping held in April at China’s Wuhan city. Photograph:( WION )

WION Web Team Beijing, China Nov 19, 2018, 02.49 PM (IST) Siddhant Sibal

The second phase of training programme of 10 Afghan diplomats in Beijing began on Monday as part of the joint project by India and China. 

In the first phase, the Afghan diplomats were trained at the Foreign Service Institute in Delhi from October 15 to October 26.

Speaking at the event, Deputy Chief of Mission of the Indian embassy in Bejing Dr Acquino Vimal said," India is firmly committed in Afghanistan’s efforts to emerge as a united, peaceful, secure, stable, inclusive and economically vibrant nation. India and Afghanistan are close neighbours as well as strategic and development partners."

He added that all the efforts of India as the development partner of Afghanistan has been based on the "priorities set by Government and the people of Afghanistan and this has been our fundamental basis for any development partnership."

Charge d’ Affairs of the Embassy of Afghanistan in Beijing Mardan Ali Qasemi & Hou Yanqi, DDG, Department of Asian Affairs, MFA of China were also present during the occasion. Through its scholarship and training programme, India trains 3500 Afghan diplomats every year.

In the last 17 years, India has committed a grant of US$3 billion for the development of Afghanistan. Since 2017, the next generation of new development partnership has been launched with the Government of Afghanistan through high impact community development projects in all the provinces of Afghanistan.

The Indian Deputy Chief of Mission said, "We are hopeful that in the months to come we will be able to identify more specific projects which can be jointly done by Government of India and Government of China for the benefit of Afghanistan as desired by the government and people of Afghanistan."

India has also been developing a number of infrastructure projects in Afghanistan with the Afghan Parliament in Kabul and India Afghan Friendship dam in Herat being constructed with New Delhi's help. Indian PM Modi has visited Afghanistan 2 times since taking over in 2014.

The joint training of diplomats was one of the major outcomes of Wuhan informal summit between PM Modi and Chinese President  Xi Jinping earlier this year. 

Since then PM Modi and Chinese President have met on the sidelines of BRICS and SCO Summit. They will be meeting again on the sidelines of the G20 Summit in Argentina. This will be the 4th meeting between the 2 leaders this year.