The Director of the Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), William J. Burns, met India’s National Security Adviser Ajit Doval in New Delhi on Tuesday – the day the Taliban announced their choices for several acting cabinet positions.
The specifics of what Doval and Burns discussed were not known, but reports said security issues and the situation in Afghanistan were priority for both sides.
Burns was in Afghanistan last month to meet the Taliban leadership, including Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar, who had led the Taliban’s negotiations with the United States. Baradar was named as the acting deputy leader of the council of ministers on Tuesday.
Doval is also meeting his Russian counterpart, Nikolai Patrushev, in Delhi on Wednesday. The two will discuss issues relating to China, Pakistan and Afghanistan, NDTV quoted sources as saying.
Meanwhile, India’s envoy to Russia, DB Venkatesh Varma, has said talks with the Taliban in Doha have not yielded the right results. “India was not a direct participant in the Doha talks. India was also not part of the Troika Plus mechanism, but as I said, these mechanisms have not yielded the right results,” Venkatesh said, referring to the Qatar-hosted talks with the Taliban that paved the way for the US pullout from Afghanistan. “I think one lesson is that it is better that India and Russia work together with respect to Afghanistan. That is the most important lesson for us.”
‘Culture of violence’
Pakistani interference in Afghanistan remains a concern for India. Islamabad continues to foment a “culture of violence” at home and across its borders, India said on Tuesday, criticising the country for using the United Nations platform for hate speech against India.
“A culture of peace is not just an abstract value or principle to be discussed and celebrated in conferences, but needs to be actively built into global relationships between and among member states,” First Secretary in India’s Permanent Mission to the UN, Vidisha Maitra, said in the UN General Assembly.
“We have witnessed yet another attempt today by the delegation of Pakistan to exploit a UN platform for hate speech against India, even as it continues to foment a culture of violence at home and across its borders. We dismiss and condemn all such efforts,” she said.