India announces $450 mn fresh assistance for Afghanistan

August 4th, 2008 - 3:33 pm ICT by IANS  

A file-photo of Manmohan Singh

New Delhi, Aug 4 (IANS) Unfazed by the July 7 attack on its mission in Kabul, India Monday announced fresh assistance of $450 million for the reconstruction of Afghanistan as the two countries vowed to fight the menace of terrorism jointly. “It was an attack on the friendship between India and Afghanistan. We will fight it unitedly and with determination,” Prime Minister Manmohan Sigh said after holding talks with Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai here.

President Karzai arrived in the Indian capital Sunday night for a two-day state visit from Colombo, where he attended the 15th SAARC summit along with Manmohan Singh and other leaders of South Asian countries.

India has alleged that Pakistan’s Inter-Services Intelligence’s (ISI) hand was behind the attack on the Indian mission in Kabul that killed a diplomat and a defence attaché of brigadier rank, besides fifty others.

Karzai has also indicated the involvement of a foreign hand in the blasts.

The prime minister reiterated India’s abiding commitment to Afghanistan’s efforts to build a democratic, stable and pluralistic polity and announced an additional amount of $450 million for rebuilding the war-torn country.

The fresh aid has taken India’s total contribution to reconstruction of Afghanistan to $1.2 billion making it one of the leading donors to that country.

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