India, Afghanistan assert determination to defeat terrorism

New Delhi, Aug.25 (ANI): Agreeing that terrorism is the main threat undermining peace and stability in the region, India and Afghanistan have reiterated their resolve to effectively combat and defeat it.

During their meet, External Affairs Minister S.M.Krishna and visiting Afghanistan Foreign Minister Zalmai Rassoul agreed that: "There is a need to ensure terrorist and extremist groups targeting Afghanistan and other countries in the region are denied safe havens and sanctuaries."

Reaffirming their determination to consolidate the multi-dimensional and long-term strategic partnership shared by them, in the common interests of the people of the two countries and the region as a whole, the two leaders agreed terrorism is the main threat undermining peace and stability in the region.

The duo shared their vision of Afghanistan as a hub linking Central and South Asia through easier trade and transit links and people-to-people exchanges.

They emphasized the strategic partnership between India and Afghanistan, based on symbiotic historical and cultural ties, and common interests and values.

India has already conveyed its desire to see a strong, stable, peaceful and prosperous Afghanistan and reiterated its commitment to assisting Afghanistan in its development efforts in accordance with the wishes and priorities of the people of Afghanistan.

Expressing their satisfaction at the frequent and substantive consultations between the two sides, both Krishna and Rassoul underlined the need for an early operationalization of the India-Afghanistan Partnership Council to widen and deepen mutually beneficial cooperation between the two nations.

The visiting Minister thanked SM Krishna for his participation in the Kabul International Conference on July 20, 2010.

Minister of External Affairs congratulated Afghanistan on successfully hosting this very important Conference, and expressed the support of the Government of India for the outcomes of the Kabul Conference.

Rassoul's current visit to India is part of the regular high-level interaction between the two sides, and reflects the importance given by both India and Afghanistan to their strategic and developmental partnership.

During his visit, the Afghan Foreign Minister also called on Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and met National Security Advisor Shivshankar Menon on a range of bilateral, regional, and international issues of mutual interest.

Dr. Singh conveyed his best wishes to President Hamid Karzai and other leaders of Afghanistan.

He also expressed India's strong support for the Government and people of Afghanistan in their endeavour to build a peaceful, prosperous and democratic nation.

"The visiting Afghan Foreign Minister has conveyed his country's deep appreciation for the important and constructive role being played by India in the reconstruction and development of Afghanistan," said a joint statement issued by Ministry of External Affairs. (ANI)

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