India reminds Afghanistan of Taliban reconciliation ‘red lines’July 15th, 2011 - 11:56 pm ICT by IANS
New Delhi, July 15 (IANS) India Friday reminded Afghanistan that the Taliban reconciliation process should be “Afghan-led” and must adhere to “red lines” agreed by the international community that entail the Taliban renouncing violence and accepting the Afghan constitution.
This was conveyed by External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna to Burhanuddin Rabbani, head of Afghan High Peace Council, when the two held talks here Thursday.
“During the visit, the High Peace Council delegation held detailed discussions with the external affairs minister and his delegation on the peace process in Afghanistan,” the external affairs ministry said in a statement here Friday.
“India’s support for Afghanistan’s quest for peace and stability through a process which is Afghan-led, Afghan-owned, inclusive and transparent and which respects the redlines agreed upon by the Government of Afghanistan and the international community, was reiterated,” the ministry said.
India has made it clear that it is ready to accept a peace deal provided certain red lines are observed. These include accommodating only those Taliban who sever links with the Taliban-Al Qaeda, renounce violence and accept the Afghan constitution.
The Taliban reconciliation and the situation in Afghanistan will also figure in talks between US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and Krishna during the India-US strategic dialogue Tuesday.
Rabbani, a former Afghan president who wrapped up his two-day visit to India Friday, also briefed Krishna on the security situation in his country which has become more precarious recently.
“India is an important country in the region and we want its cooperation in peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan,” Rabbani told reporters.
According to some reports, the peace council members had recently met members of the Quetta Shura in Abu Dhabi, the United Arab Emirates and are holding talks with influential Taliban leaders.
Afghanistan is keen to learn from India’s experience in reconciliation and peace efforts it has used in its in northeast, said informed sources. They see India as a model multi-cultural pluralistic society.
Krishna underscored India’s growing stakes in peace and stability of Afghanistan for whose reconstruction it has pledged $2 billion.
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Tags: abu dhabi, council members, delegation, external affairs minister, external affairs ministry, government of afghanistan, hillary clinton, krishna, New Delhi, peace and reconciliation, peace and stability, peace council, peace deal, peace process, redlines, security situation, shura, taliban, united arab emirates, us secretary of state