Will not do anything detrimental to India’s interests: Karzai

Last Updated: Sunday, January 9, 2011 - 21:10

Kabul: With India raising concern over
Pakistan`s increasing involvement in Afghanistan`s transition
process, President Hamid Karzai on Sunday assured visiting
External Affairs Minister S M Krishna that his government will
not make any move that is detrimental to New Delhi`s interest.

Karzai sought to allay India`s concerns during his
meeting with Krishna, who is here on a two-day visit.

The Afghan President assured Krishna that India was
"uppermost" on his government`s priorities and appreciated New
Delhi`s contribution to the post-war reconstruction and
rebuilding efforts in his country.

He said the Afghan government would not act in any way
that is detrimental to India`s interests, official sources
said.

India, which has pledged USD 1.3 billion to the
reconstruction projects in Afghanistan, has repeatedly
expressed apprehensions over Pakistan`s involvement in the
transition process and over giving Taliban representation in
the government.

Besides Karzai, Krishna also met his Afghan counterpart
Zalmay Rasool, National Security Advisor Rangin Dadfar Spanta
and former president Burhanuddin Rabbani, who recently led an
Afghan delegation to Pakistan to hold discussions over the
peace process.

During the Afghan delegation`s meetings with the top
Pakistani leadership, the two countries decided to set up a
high-powered joint consultative commission to take forward the
peace process in Afghanistan.

Rabbani briefed Krishna on the outcome of his visit to
Islamabad, sources said.

Earlier, addressing a joint press conference with Rasool,
Krishna had said that any "external" interference in the
transition process of Afghanistan will be detrimental to both
its success and the future of the people of Afghanistan,
though he did not directly name Pakistan.

Rasool, on his part said, that the peace process cannot
succeed without being led by the Afghan people and noted that
the process was fully controlled by it.

The two leaders held extensive talks on issues like
terrorism in the region, security of Indians and various
economic projects.

"Any external interference in the reintegration process
would be detrimental to its success and for the future of
democratic, stable, pluralistic and prosperous Afghanistan,"
Krishna said.

The External Affairs Minister also asserted that despite
security concerns, India will continue to provide
developmental assistance as long as the Afghan government
wants. He also noted that Afghanistan government has assured
India of full security.

PTI



First Published: Sunday, January 9, 2011 - 21:10

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