India, Russia share Afghanistan terror overflow worry

By Express News Service

NEW DELHI:  With terror inextricably linked to the DNA of the government unveiled by the Taliban in Afghanistan, National Security Advisor Ajit Doval on Wednesday held separate meetings with his Russian counterpart Nikolai Patrushev and CIA chief Williams Burns. During the Doval-Patrushev meeting both sides agreed to coordinate their approaches in multilateral formats on the developments in Afghanistan.

The Indian stress was on pressuring Pakistan to put a lid on terror overflow from Afghanistan. “We conveyed to the Russians that Pakistan has a special responsibility to ensure that Afghanistan soil is not used to spread terrorism,” sources said.

Regarding the agenda of the Doval-Patrushev meeting, top officials said the political, security and humanitarian situation in the war-torn country and its possible implications on India and China was discussed at length. The role of drug cartels was also discussed with Doval and his counterpart assuring each other of cooperation to meet current and future threats and measures to assist Afghanistan.

Doval is understood to have underlined Pakistan deep state’s symbiotic links with terror groups in Afghanistan, such as the Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed. He also expressed concern over security of minorities like Afghan Hindus and Sikhs who could not be evacuated.

Patrushev later met External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar and Prime Minister Narendra Modi. “The two sides reaffirmed their intention to strengthen coordination in the field of enhancing regional stability, including on the Afghan direction,” a Russian Embassy statement said.

The India-Russia meeting assumes significance as weeks ago, Russia and China had abstained from voting on a joint India-France-US-UK resolution on Afghanistan at the UN Security Council. Earlier in the day, New Delhi shared its Afghan concerns with visiting security heads of Britain and the US, MI-6 chief Richard Moore and CIA chief William Burns, respectively. 

Call to curb terrorBoth Russia and India agreed on the need for Taliban to adhere to promises, curb global terror groups operating out of Afghanistan and their consequent threat to Central Asia and India, and smuggling