Border tensions in region impacts Afghanistan; seek positive contribution: Dr Abdullah on India-China standoff

Afghanistan’s Chairman of the High Council for National Reconciliation, Abdullah Abdullah was on a five-day visit to India. He engaged with India’s top leadership to discuss the Afghan Peace Process and the intra-Afghan talks where he leads the Afghan delegation.

Speaking exclusively to India Today TV’s Foreign Affairs Editor Geeta Mohan, Abdullah said any tensions in the region does impact Afghanistan. This was to a question on the ongoing border tensions between India and China, given that both New Delhi and Beijing are development partners of Kabul.

On the issue of terrorism, while the Afghan leader said they assured the Indian leadership that their soil will not be allowed to be used against India, he did not respond directly to questions on terror networks based out of Afghanistan. On terrorists operating out of Pakistan against India, he said India will have to raise that issue bilaterally with Pakistan.

Abdullah was in Pakistan last month and says he returned with “positive” impressions. Islamabad and Rawalpindi (Pakistan Army’s headquarters play an important role in which way the Taliban would go.

On the issue of US President Trump announcing troop withdrawal by Christmas, he said that they will have to see the final details of the announcement, but ultimately, Afghanistan has to “stand on her own”.

One of the concerns for India has been the issue of women’s rights. Return of the Taliban could threaten such liberties but Abdullah assured that somethings are “irreversible”.

These rights are enshrined in the constitution and the Taliban would have to understand that. “Peace will not materialise by discriminating against half of the population, it doesn’t mean peace,” he said.

Border tensions in region impacts Afghanistan; seek positive contribution: Dr Abdullah on India-China standoff