Neighbours must contribute to Afghan peace: S Jaishankar

Afghanistan’s neighbours must contribute to peace, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar asserted on Friday without naming Pakistan, and pointed out that describing India’s role in the landlocked country as being directed against Pakistan undermines New Delhi’s efforts in that nation.

“Afghanistan needs a double peace -peace within the country and peace around the country,” Jaishankar said, adding that “Afghanistan’s neighbours must contribute towards this.” “It is an absolute fantasy that what India has done in Afghanista is indirectly aimed at Pakistan, and saying so undermines India’s efforts in Afghanistan,” Jaishankar said.

“In the last 20 years, we have demonstrated through our actions and projects on the ground what our real feelings are for Afghanistan. Afghanistan needs a double peace. It needs peace within, and it needs peace around,” he added.

The minister was speaking at a panel discussion on Afghanistan – titled ‘Junction Kabul: The Road to Peace’ -at the Raisina Dialogue held in virtual mode.

Iran’s foreign minister, Javad Zarif, who was part of the panel said that there was a need for the Taliban “to change in democratic ways” as today’s Afghanistan is different from what it was in 2001.

Zarif said, “If they want to go back to their 90s ideology, it will be impossible, as there is a new and different Afghanistan today.”

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