Asian countries coordinate Afghanistan challenges strategy

New Delhi, Nov 10 (EFE).- Security advisers from several Asian countries, including India, Iran and Russia, met on Wednesday with the aim of developing a plan to face the challenges and security threats posed by the situation in Afghanistan after the Taliban seized power in August.

Taking part in the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue are representatives of Russia, Iran, Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Tajikistan, Kyrgyzstan and Kazakhstan.

Both China and Pakistan, which have several border disputes with India, declined the invitation to attend the dialogue in New Delhi.

“We have been keenly watching the developments in Afghanistan. These have important implications not only for the people of Afghanistan but also for its neighbors and the region,” Indian National Security Advisor Ajit Doval said in his opening remarks.

This is the third edition of the dialogue following those held in Iran in 2018 and 2019.

Last year’s meeting, which was to be held in India, was canceled due to the Covid-19 pandemic.

“This is the time for close consultation among us, greater cooperation and interaction, and coordination among the regional countries,” Doval added.

The situation in Afghanistan has sparked concern in the region in recent months following the country’s takeover by the Taliban in August and a deterioration in the humanitarian situation after the flow of aid was paralyzed.

Ali Shamkhani, secretary of Iran’s supreme national security council, said that the two main challenges in Afghanistan was the crisis of migration and refugees. Many Afghans have fled to Iran since the Taliban’s takeover of Afghanistan.

“(The) solution can come only with the formation of an inclusive government, with participation of all ethnic groups,” he said.

The current interim Taliban government mainly comprises of members of the fundamentalist outfit belonging to the Pashtun ethnic group, the largest in Afghanistan.

According to the secretary of the security council of Tajikistan, Nasrullo Mahmudzoda, the situation on the Tajik-Afghan border “remains complicated” amid security threats to the region.

“We as the neighboring country are ready to participate in all programs that can help the people of Afghanistan. As we have a long border with Afghanistan, the current situation creates extra risk and possibilities for drug trafficking, terrorism,” he warned.

Since the Taliban’s seizure of power, several meetings have been held between the governments of the region and the international community in an attempt to find consensus on how to address the situation and recognition of the Islamists in power.

The event in New Delhi takes place on the eve of another meeting of the so-celled “expanded troika” consisting of Russia, China, Pakistan and the United States, which will take place in Islamabad on Thursday and will be attended by a Taliban delegation. EFE


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