NEW DELHI: Expressing grave concern at continued use of terrorism for achieving political objectives in the region, India and Afghanistan today called for an end to all sponsorship and sanctuaries to terrorists, in what is seen as a message to Pakistan.
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and visiting Afghan President Ashraf Ghani expressed their resolve to counter terrorism and strengthen security and defense cooperation as envisaged in the India-Afghanistan Strategic Partnership Agreement.
Following delegation-level talks between the two sides at the Hyderabad House here, Modi said India would allocate a sum of USD one billion for Afghanistan’s capacity and capability building in spheres such as education, health, agriculture, skill development, empowerment of women, energy, infrastructure and strengthening of democratic institutions.
Both sides also signed three agreements – Extradition Treaty, cooperation in civil and commercial matters and the Memorandum of Understanding on Cooperation in Peaceful Uses of Outer Space.
“The two leaders discussed the regional situation and expressed grave concern at continued use of terrorism and violence in the region for achieving political objectives.
“They agreed that this phenomenon presented the single biggest threat to peace, stability and progress in the region and beyond,” a joint statement said without naming Pakistan, a nation that both countries accuse of sponsoring terror.
Stressing that elimination of all forms of terrorism, without any discrimination, is essential, they called upon “the concerned” to put an end to all sponsorship, support, safe havens and sanctuaries to terrorists, including for those who target Afghanistan and India.
The Prime Minister also proposed to supply world class and easily affordable medicines from India and cooperation in solar energy through mutually agreed instruments.
Recalling that India-Afghanistan bilateral development cooperation has assisted Afghanistan’s own efforts for successful political, security and economic transitions, the two leaders noted with happiness the recent completion of major milestones such as Parliament Building and the Afghanistan-India Friendship Dam.
Both leaders said they looked forward to the resumption of India-US-Afghanistan consultations in New York later this month.
The Prime Minister conveyed to the President that India would continue to engage with the international community to assist the Government of Afghanistan in all possible ways. –PTI