India to attend Russia-led meet on Afghanistan, but at “non official level”

India to attend Russia-led meet on Afghanistan, but at “non official level”

Agency News

New Delhi, Nov 8: India on Thursday said its participation at the crucial meeting initiated by Russia on the conflict with Afghanistan will be at the "non official level" and that New Delhi continues to support all efforts for peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan.

"Our participation at the meeting will be at the non-official level," MEA spokesman said in reply to a query.

"India supports all efforts at peace and reconciliation in Afghanistan that will preserve unity and plurality, and bring security, stability and prosperity to the country. India's consistent policy has been that such efforts should be Afghan-led, Afghan-owned, and Afghan-controlled and with participation of the Government of Afghanistan," the spokesman said.

"We are aware that the Russian Federation is hosting a meeting in Moscow on November 9 on Afghanistan," he said.

Russia has invited 12 countries and the Taliban, who are fighting to re-impose strict Islamic law after their 2001 ouster by U.S.-led troops.

Sources said representatives from Iran, China, Pakistan, Tajikistan, Uzbekistan and Turkmenistan are expected to attend.

Reports in the media said the Moscow talks underline the increasingly active role Russia is playing in Afghanistan, decades after Soviet forces withdrew from the country.

An Afghan delegation is also likely to attend international talks on the war-torn country in Russia.

Afghanistan’s High Peace Council, a government body responsible for reconciliation efforts with the militants, is expected to send four representatives for the same, media reports said. (UNI)