Press Trust of India

Ensuring calm: Peace in and around Afghanistan essential: Jaishankar

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Dushanbe: India on Tuesday underlined that for ensuring durable peace in war-torn Afghanistan, genuine “double peace” — peace within the country and peace around it — was essential.
Addressing the 9th Heart of Asia Ministerial Conference here in Tajikistan’s capital, Dushanbe, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar also highlighted that it requires harmonising the interests of all, both within and around Afghanistan.
For a durable peace in Afghanistan, what we need is a genuine “double peace”, that is, peace within Afghanistan and peace around Afghanistan. It requires harmonising the interests of all, both within and around that country, Jaishankar tweeted.
“If the peace process is to be successful, then it is necessary to ensure that the negotiating parties continue to engage in good faith, with a serious commitment towards reaching a political solution,” he wrote.
“Today, we are striving for a more inclusive Afghanistan that can overcome decades of conflict. But that will happen only if we stay true to principles that Heart of Asia has long embodied.
Collective success may not be easy but the alternative is only collective failure,” Jaishankar tweeted on the three key points he suggested at the meeting, also attended by Afghan President Ashraf Ghani and Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi.
Last week, Jaishankar said that India would like to clearly see a sovereign democratic and inclusive Afghanistan that takes into account the interests of its minorities.
“There is something called the peace and reconciliation process and everybody else is saying that the Taliban is reaching out and changing etc. Let us wait and watch,” he had said.
During his visit, Jaishanakar is also expected to meet leaders of other participating countries on the sidelines of the two-day conference.
The Taliban and the Afghan government are holding direct talks to end 19 years of war that has killed tens of thousands of people and ravaged various parts of the country.
India has been a major stakeholder in the peace and stability of Afghanistan. It has already invested USD two billion in aid and reconstruction activities in the country.
India has been supporting a national peace and reconciliation process which is Afghan-led, Afghan-owned and Afghan-controlled.
The Heart of Asia-Istanbul Process (HoA-IP) ministerial conference is part of the Istanbul Process – a regional initiative on security and cooperation for a stable and peaceful Afghanistan – that was launched on November 2, 2011 in Turkey.


Press Trust of India

Press Trust of India is lead news agency of India

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