India ready to support Afghan forces, peace bid
NEW DELHI (Pajhwok): Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday said his country was prepared to continue supporting capacity building of Afghan security forces and that New Delhi had a shared interest in the success of an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.
“I am pleased that we have delivered three Cheetal Helicopters to Afghanistan, which will add to the growing capabilities of the valiant Afghan Forces," the premier told reporters here after a meeting with visiting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and his delegation.
About the peace process in Afghanistan, Modi said: “This should be conducted within the framework of the Constitution of Afghanistan, without the shadow of violence.”
He told President Ghani: "India will walk shoulder to shoulder with you and the Afghan people in a mission of global importance."
Modi said he had discussed with Ghani the historic efforts to rebuild Afghanistan."We in India admire the courage and resolve of the Afghan people to seek a future of peace and prosperity. They are succeeding against huge challenges," he said.
"The relationship between India and Afghanistan is not just between two countries or governments. It is a timeless link of human hearts. We deeply value the friendship and the goodwill of the Afghan people. Every Indian, in turn, holds the Afghan people in the highest affection and esteem," said Modi.
Without naming Pakistan, Modi said: "Its success requires a positive and constructive approach from neighbours, including an end to support for violence." "We share Afghanistan's pain over persisting terrorism and extremist violence that destroy lives and derail progress," he said.
The Indian Prime Minister announced his country was ready to allow Afghan trucks to unload goods at the integrated check post in Attari, thus offering Afghanistan access to the Indian market.
"We are ready to welcome Afghan trucks at the ICP Attari. We are also prepared to join the successor agreement to Afghan-Pakistan Trade and Transit Agreement. This will re-establish one of the oldest trading routes of South Asia," said Modi.
"I also reaffirmed my commitment to take the Chahbahar Port project in Iran forward. We will also quickly conclude a bilateral Motor Vehicles Agreement," he said.
Ghani, addressing Indian media, said he welcomed the emphasis in bilateral transport agreement which would allow Afghan goods to India.
Modi said: "We will expand our development partnership, which includes infrastructure, agriculture, connectivity, human resource development, community projects and humanitarian assistance. We will explore new trade and investment opportunities."
The Indian prime minister said "Afghan children have a special focus in our efforts. "Today, I conveyed fresh support for Habibia School in Kabul, the Indira Gandhi Child Health Care Hospital and Red Crescent Society Fund for treatment of children with congenital heart disease," said Modi.
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