India officially talks to Taliban, discusses safe evacuation, terrorism

India officially talks to Taliban, discusses safe evacuation, terrorism
  • Published9월 1, 2021

In the first official contact with Taliban, Indian envoy to Qatar Deepak Mittal met Taliban leader Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai at the Indian Embassy in Doha on Tuesday.

A statement by the MEA said, “Today, Ambassador of India to Qatar, Deepak Mittal, met Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai, the Head of Taliban’s Political Office in Doha. The meeting took place at the Embassy of India, Doha, on the request of the Taliban side.”

It said that the discussions focused on safety, security and early return of Indian nationals stranded in Afghanistan. The travel of Afghan nationals, especially minorities who wish to visit India, also came up.

Ambassador Mittal raised India’s concern that Afghanistan’s soil should not be used for anti-Indian activities and terrorism in any manner, it said.

The Taliban Representative assured the Ambassador that these issues would be positively addressed, it said.

This came at a time when in view of the evolving situation in Afghanistan, Prime Minister Narendra Modi had recently directed that a high-level group comprising External affairs minister S Jaishankar, NSA Ajit Doval and senior officials focus on the immediate priorities of India.

This group has been meeting regularly over the past few days. It is seized of issues pertaining to the safe return of stranded Indians, the travel of Afghan nationals (especially minorities) to India, and ensuring that Afghanistan territory is not used for terrorism directed against India.

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The group has also been monitoring the ground situation in Afghanistan and international reactions, including the Resolution passed by the UN Security Council.

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