After air-corridor, Ghani wants sea link with India

President Ashraf Ghani has said by connecting India to the Middle East, Afghanistan wants to pave the ground for greater economic cooperation in the region, his office said on Tuesday.

Ghani, who arrived in New Delhi earlier in the day on a day-long visit, met his Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, tweeted External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Raveesh Kumar tweeted. Foreign Minister Sushma Swaraj called on Ghani and discussed bilateral and regional issues.

The visiting president will also hold delegation-level talks on reviewing bilateral relations between the two countries with Prime Minister Narendra Modi. Trade, security, and regional issues are high on the agenda.

Both sides will hold consultations and coordinate on furthering the shared objective of promoting peace, security, stability, and prosperity in Afghanistan and efforts to combat the menace of terrorism.

A statement from the Presidential Palace in Kabul said President Ghani met his Indian counterpart Ram Nath Kovind and External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj.

Issues ranging from economic cooperation, trade, transit, counter-terrorism and regional matters came up for discussion, the statement said. The US news strategy for South Asia and Afghanistan and the post-strategy situation was also discussed.

Referring to enhanced economic relations, the president said: “Trade via the air-corridor is successfully underway and we want to be connected with India by sea as well.”

Ghani sough India’s assistance in developing Afghanistan sectors including mining, textile, industry and capacity building.

The Indian delegation, headed by the foreign minister, welcomed President Ghani and his team and assured India’s complete support in different sectors with the people of Afghanistan.

“Our purpose is the establishment of durable peace and stability in the region and this purpose could be achieved by mutual cooperation and efforts by the regional countries,” said Swaraj.

The visiting president also held delegation-level talks with Prime Minister Narendra Modi on reviewing bilateral relations between the two countries. Trade, security and regional issues were high on the agenda.

Both the sides held consultations on furthering the shared objective of promoting peace, security, stability, and prosperity in Afghanistan and efforts at combating the menace of terrorism.

Modi and Ghani expressed their “firm resolve” to end the menace of terrorism and discussed ways to further the shared objective of promoting security and stability in Afghanistan.

“Furthering ‘neighbourhood first’ policy with a strategic partner. Modi receives Ghani at Hyderabad House,” Raveesh Kumar tweeted.

A day earlier, Ghani met US Secretary of State Rex Tillerson in Kabul on a regional approach to combating terrorism in South Asia. Tillerson is scheduled to meet Swaraj in New Delhi on October 25.

By: Pajh Work

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