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Kabul-Delhi ties pose no threat to Islamabad: Abdali

Shaida-AbdaliNEW DELHI: Afghan Ambassador to India Dr. Shaida Abdali says New Delhi’s relations with Kabul are not a threat to other neighbours but are aimed at the reconstruction of Afghanistan.

In an interview with PajhwokNews, Abdali said Afghanistan could not cut ties with its strategic friends who posed no threats to its territory.

In response to the Pakistani prime minister’s recent remarks on India’s role in Afghanistan, he said: “Any country, if its territory is affected from Afghanistan, can react. But if there is no evidences of threats from Afghanistan, then they cannot and should not object.”

Prime Minister Shahid Khaqan Abbasi, addressing the 72nd United Nations General Assembly in New York this week, opposed India’s political and military role in Afghanistan. But the Presidential Palace rejected the statement as interference in the country’s internal affairs.

For his part, Shiada Abdali said: “The stances of any other country on Afghanistan — an independent and sovereign state — is not above our national interests. ”

He added India’s relations with Afghanistan were based on a strategic agreement. “Afghanistan is independent in forging relations with other nations and chooses its friends on its own.”

In response to a question about Pakistan’s concern that India would pose a threat to it from Afghanistan, he replied: “Kabul would never allow anyone to use its soil against others. We are an independent country and we hope Pakistan would see Afghanistan as such.”

He said India had extended three billion US dollars in aid to Afghanistan for on long-term reconstruction and high-impact development projects.

Abdali said India had promised training and equipping Afghan security forces. “India can play a good role in developing Afghan security forces to NATO standards and repair damaged our helicopters,” he believed.

By Zeerak Fahim, New Delhi.

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