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US Spl envoy on Afghanistan visits India amid COVID-19; holds talks with Jaishankar, Doval

Khalilzad provided to his Indian interlocutors an update on the US peace and reconciliation efforts in Afghanistan while recognising India’s constructive contribution in economic development, reconstruction and humanitarian assistance to the war-torn nation.

SNS | New Delhi |

In the midst of the coronavirus crisis, US Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad landed in New Delhi and held crucial talks with External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and National Security Adviser (NSA) Ajit Doval today on the peace process in the war-ravaged nation.

Khalilzad provided to his Indian interlocutors an update on the US peace and reconciliation efforts in Afghanistan while recognising India’s constructive contribution in economic development, reconstruction and humanitarian assistance to the war-torn nation. He said the US administration gave utmost importance to India’s crucial and continuing role in sustainable peace, security and stability in Afghanistan.

Both Jaishankar and Doval reiterated India’s continued support for strengthening peace, security, unity, democratic and inclusive polity and protection of rights of all sections of the Afghan society, including Afghan Hindus and Sikhs.

They told the US official that India was deeply concerned at the upsurge in violence and supported call for an immediate ceasefire and need to assist the people of Afghanistan in dealing with coronavirus pandemic, the External Affairs Ministry said.

They also told him that India remained engaged in extending humanitarian food and medical supplies to Afghanistan to deal with the situation created by coronavirus. It was emphasised that putting an end to terrorist safe havens and sanctuaries was necessary for enduring and sustainable peace and stability in Afghanistan.

Khalilzad was accompanied by Senior Director in the US National Security Council Lisa Curtis and US Ambassador to India Ken Juster.

The US point man on Afghanistan is on a three-nation trip to Qatar, India and Pakistan to discuss the Afghan peace process and seek an accelerated timeline for the start of intra-Afghan negotiations to end violence in the troubled nation.