National Security Advisor (NSA) Ajit Doval has stressed on the need to counter terrorism risks emanating from Afghanistan.  He also urged his counterparts from seven countries, including China, to enhance the capability of Kabul to counter terrorist groups which pose a threat to regional peace and security.  

The threat of terrorism emanating from Afghanistan was discussed during Doval’s meeting with his regional counterparts at Dushanbe in Tajikistan on Friday. Sources said that the NSA discussed several key issues related to the Taliban rule in Afghanistan during interactions with the top security officials from Tajikistan, Russia, Kazakhstan, Uzbekistan, Iran, Kyrgyzstan and China. All the NSAs discussed the situation in Afghanistan at the regional security dialogue.

Doval said that India was and is an important stakeholder in Afghanistan and added that “nothing can change this”.

“India was and is an im

portant stakeholder in Afghanistan. Special relationship with the people of Afghanistan over centuries will guide India’s approach, nothing can change this,” Doval asserted.

Doval is learnt to have underlined the need to find constructive ways to ensure peace and stability in Afghanistan.  According to sources, Doval said that historical civilization relations with Afghanistan will continue to guide India’s approach towards the country.

However, India’s main concern is about two issues. One, risk of terror activities from Afghanistan’s territory. Two, the humanitarian problems under the rule of the Taliban there. Sources said that Doval’s comments were actually aimed at reminding the NSAs and the entire global community, for that matter, of these key concerns of India. “India has sought the attention of the US and other powerful countries towards the situation in Afghanistan where terror outfits such as al-Qaeda and ISIS-K are said to be growing in strength,” sources said. “This is the assessment of the security and intelligence agencies of US,” sources said.

 “What global community should take note of is the UN Security Council recent assessment that concluded that terrorist groups enjoy greater freedom in Afghanistan than at any time in recent history.”  Sources told The Daily Guardian that India has been highlighting its terror concerns in the backdrop of all such findings. While stressing on the need to take steps in the direction of counter terrorism, Doval tried to highlight the same concern,” sources said. Doval categorically said that the countries should ensure that Afghanistan does not become a terror hub.    

The meeting is said to have carried forward the discussions during the 3rd Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan, held in New Delhi in November 2021.

According to sources Doval shared with his counterparts that since August 2021, India had already contributed 17,000 metric tonnes of wheat (of a total commitment of 50,000 metric tonnes), 5,00,000 doses of Covaxin, 13 tonnes of life-saving medications and winter clothes, and 60 million doses of polio vaccine.

Doval also met his counterparts from Iran, Tajikistan, Russia and other partners in the Dialogue on the sidelines of the meeting, the sources said. “NSA stressed that all countries should come together to ensure that Afghanistan does not become a terror hub, which will have direct ramifications on the stability in the region,” sources said.