Sunday, December 4, 2016

HeartofAsia :PM Modi & Afghan President Ghani hold bilateral talks

PM Narendra Modi and President Ashraf Ghani take a group picture before the inaugural event
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Chair of Heart of Asia : Afghan President Ashraf Ghani said, the 500 million dollars promised by Islamabad for Afghan reconstruction will be better used to fight terrorism. He said, there is a need to identify cross-border terrorism and a fund to combat terrorism. He said, Taliban has acknowledged that it gets support from Pakistan.
Mr Ghani said, India Afghanistan ties show convergence of interests and values. He said, India’s support to Afghanistan aimed at improving people’s life and is transparent with no strings attached. He said, trilateral Chabahar agreement signed between India, Afghanistan and Iran is a major step in transforming Afghanistan from a land locked country to land bridge.
The issue of firming up an air cargo service pact between the two countries is understood to have figured in the talks which will give India a leverage in Afghanistan as Pakistan continued to deny transit link through its territory. In the meeting this morning, Mr Modi assured Mr Ghani of India’s continued support for ensuring peace and stability in Afghanistan.
Co-Chair: Heart of Asia :Prime Minister Narendra Modi has urged world leaders to demonstrate strong collective will to defeat terror network that cause bloodshed and spread fear.
In his inaugural address at the 6th Heart of Asia Ministerial Conference in Amritsar today, Mr Modi said, terrorism and externally induced instability pose the gravest threat for Afghanistan’s peace, stability and prosperity. He said, silence and inaction against terrorism in Afghanistan and in South Asia region will only embolden terrorists and their masters. He said, support for voices of peace in Afghanistan alone is not enough and it must be backed by a resolute action.
The Prime Minister also called for action not just against forces of terrorism but also against those who support, shelter and finance them. Mr Modi said, since the turn of the century, the international community has extensively engaged in Afghanistan and the Heart of Asia conference re-affirms commitment of the international community to durable peace and lasting political stability in Afghanistan. He said, the nations must protect and build on the gains of the last fifteen years and march ahead.
He said, as India implements its additional commitments, it is also open to work with other like-minded partners for the development of Afghanistan. Mr Modi said, India’s commitment to its brave Afghan brothers and sisters is absolute and unwavering. The Prime Minister also stressed on working together to build stronger positive connectivity between Afghanistan and other countries of the region.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Afghan President Ashraf Ghani today held bilateral talks focusing on a range of key issues including boosting trade and investment and strengthening defence and security partnership. During the meeting in Amritsar, Afghanistan sought enhanced supply of military hardware from India to strengthen its armed forces.
Briefing media persons, Mr Ghani thanked India for its consistent support to Afghanistan. Earlier, Talking to reporters, Afghan Foreign Minister Salahuddin Rabbani said, there is much to be done to tackle challenges like terrorism and radicalism.
Last week, India had given Afghanistan the last of the four military helicopters. India has trained hundreds of Afghan security personnel. India and Afghanistan have also been exploring various connectivity projects for better bilateral trade.
In May, India, Iran and Afghanistan signed an agreement to set-up a trade and transport corridor with Chabahar in Iran as the hub. Meanwhile, Mr Modi and Mr Ghani jointly inaugurates the ministerial deliberations at the 6th Heart of Asia conference, which will see participation of more than 30 countries.
Both leaders reached Amritsar, Punjab yesterday evening. Our correspondent reports that the conference will discuss peace, cooperation and economic development in Afghanistan.

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