India, U.S in constant touch over Afghanistan: Nirupama Rao

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New Delhi, Nov 4 (ANI): Foreign Secretary Nirupama Rao said on Thursday that both India and the United States, driven by their common goals, maintain a constant touch about all developments related to Afghanistan.

"India and the US maintain constant contact on Afghanistan. We discuss the issue closely with United States. The US interlocutors on Afghanistan have visited India. We share common goals," said Nirupama Rao while making a statement on the upcoming visit of the U.S. President scheduled between Nov.6 to 8.

She disclosed about the cooperation being maintained between India and the United States after she was asked whether India would take up the issue of talks with Taliban during US President's upcoming India visit.

"We are against extremism, militant radicalism in Afghanistan. We want to see plural, democratic and peaceful Afghanistan," she stated.

It may be recalled that during the recent three-nation Asia visit of Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh, while discussing the situation in Afghanistan, India and Japan had expressed their resolve to assist Afghanistan in becoming a stable, democratic and pluralistic nation that is free of terrorism and extremism.

Expressing their commitment to help Afghanistan, Prime Minister Dr. Manmohan Singh and Japanese Prime Minister Naoto Kan had laid stress on the importance of a coherent and united international commitment to Afghan-led initiatives.

Meanwhile, Nirupama Rao today also denied the observation that Indian authorities were speaking in double voice over the issue of Mumbai terror attack mastermind and U.S. citizen of Pakistan origin David Coleman Headley.

"I don't think there is any contradiction," said Ms. Rao.

It maybe noted four days ahead of Obama's touchdown in Mumbai, the Government looked trying to settle down the controversy that erupted over Union Home Secretary G.K. Pillai's remarks in which he stated that the US did not share sufficient information on 26/11 mastermind David Coleman Headley.

On Tuesday (Nov.3), National Security Advisor Shiv Shankar Menon tried to clear the air over the Pillai's remarks by stating that access given by the US with regard to Headley was unprecedented and such cooperation may not have been possible five years ago. (ANI)

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