India rules out involvement in Afghanistan security

June 30th, 2011 - 12:51 am ICT by IANS  

Pranab Mukherjee Washington, June 29 (IANS) India has made it clear to the US that it does not want to be involved in any security role in Afghanistan nor would it like to be engaged in a trilateral India-Pakistan-Afghanistan dialogue.

India’s stand was reiterated in talks between visiting Finance Minister Pranab Mukherjee and US Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and US National Security Adviser Tom Donilon, the Indian minister told the media here Wednesday.

Mukherjee said in the talks covering the geo-political situation and what’s happening in India’s neighbourhood, the US officials suggested India-Pakistan-Afghanistan talks and asked New Delhi to play a more pro-active role in Afghanistan.

Referring to the ongoing talks with Pakistan and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh’s visit to Kabul, the Indian minister said he told Clinton and Donilon that “important elements of a structured dialogue had started at different levels” with both Pakistan and Afghanistan.

“We are mainly engaged in Afghanistan in building up capacity in the social sector and infrastructure,” he said. “We don’t want to be involved in any security in Afghanistan.”

Mukherjee said he also discussed with Clinton the overall relations between India and the US in the run-up to the second US-India Strategic dialogue in New Delhi in July, led by Clinton and Indian External Affairs Minister S.M. Krishna.

(Arun Kumar can be contacted at arun.kumar@ians.in)

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