close

News WrapGet Handpicked Stories from our editors directly to your mailbox

During US special envoy Khalilzad's visit, India dismissed idea of interim government in Afghanistan

File photo of US envoy Zalmay Khalilzad. Photograph:( Reuters )

WION New Delhi, Delhi, India Feb 04, 2019, 12.56 PM (IST) Written By: Sidhant Sibal

With the rapidly developing situation in Afghanistan, India had made it clear to US special envoy on Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad who was on his maiden Delhi visit last month that it doesnt favor any interim arrangements and reminded him about its deep economic and security interest in the south Asian country. 

In the recent Taliban-US talks, there have been calls of an interim administration and many expect if a peace pact is agreed, Kabul might see an interim government.

India while understanding Washington's keenness to withdraw from Afghanistan, called for safeguarding the existing political and constitutional structure.

Zalmay after his New Delhi visit, later visited Afghanistan, China and Pakistan.

New Delhi, which is constructing number of infrastructure projects in Afghanistan, informed Zalmay that continuation of its projects depends on how the situation evolves in Afghanistan.

With a development assistance of $3 billion, India is Afghanistan's largest doner. It is also connecting Afghanistan via Chabahar port and the India-Afghanistan air corridor which was launched in 2017. It had built the Afghan parliament and India-Afghan friendship dam in Herat and is currently constructing 218 km road from Zaranj to Delaram, 220kV DC transmission line from Pul-e-Khumri to Kabul and a 220/110/20 kV sub-station at Chimtala. 

Top sources have told Wion, that India might not be visible but is acting in its security interest and doesnt see any reason for acting in haste. 

India continues to work behind the scenes and is in touch with Moscow, Tehran, Bejing and all the central Asian countries regarding the situation in Afghanistan. 

Recently India's external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj visited Samarkand in Uzbekistan and took part in the first India-Central Asia dialogues in which the situation in Afghanistan was discussed.

Inside Afghanistan also India is in touch with Pashtun leaders and other Afghan leaders. Sources in Afghanistan have confirmed, that barring Taliban, New Delhi is engaged with everyone.

Afghan Nation Security Advisor Hamdullah Mohib and former Afghan President Hamid Karzai were in Delhi recently. 

In 2018, at the Moscow talks on Afghanistan, India participated "non-officially" and sent two former envoys - former Indian ambassador to Afghanistan Amar Sinha and ex-Indian High Commissioner to Pakistan TCA Raghavan. Taliban was also present in the meet.

Last week, the ministry of external affairs spokesperson Raveesh Kumar in his weekly briefing had said, "We will participate in all formats of talks which could bring peace and security in that region."

Asked if "participation in all formats" means even if Taliban is present, MEA spokesperson said, "It is speculative. It depends from meeting to meeting. Let us see for which meetings we are being invited and then we will take a decision as to what level and what capacity we participate".

Story highlights

In the recent Taliban-US talks, there have been calls of an interim administration and many expect if a peace pact is agreed, Kabul might see an interim govt.