India and Afghanistan sign MoU on police training

President Ram Nath Kovind welcomes Dr. Abdullah

Dr. Abdullah met External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and the two leaders focussed on regional cooperation and on the implementation of new development projects in Afghanistan.

Earlier, Dr. Abdullah Abdullah called on Prime Minister Narendra Modi at his residence, where both leaders reaffirmed the strength and closeness of the multifaceted strategic partnership. The attacks also prevented Dr. Abdullah from inaugurating the India-Afghanistan trade and investment exhibition in New Delhi, sponsored by the USAID.

Abdullah, who arrived in New Delhi on Thursday, said that India was a "natural part" of the new United States policy for Afghanistan as articulated by American President Donald Trump last month.

Defence Minister Nirmala Sitharaman told U.S. Defense Secretary James Mattis that India will continue to expand its engagement with Afghanistan in various sectors, including development, medical assistance, energy etc, but emphasised that New Delhi will not send its troops. According to the government, the MoU will help in capacity building of Afghanistan National Police and improving the security apparatus in the region.

Analysts say one of the challenges faced by Afghanistan is equipping its security personnel with the skills required to take on the Taliban.

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Meanwhile, sources indicate Abdullah Abdullah held an important meeting with National Security Advisor of India Ajit Doval to discuss security demands of Afghanistan.

"India and Afghanistan enjoy deep rooted civilisational links. It fits in well with its strategy", Pant said.

India and Afghanistan exchanged a memorandum of understanding on Thursday which will see Afghan police forces trained in India for the first time.

They welcomed the accelerated cooperation, including through the recent announcement of a New Development Partnership during the meeting of the bilateral Strategic Partnership Council in New Delhi. "After 2001, the Afghan government came into its own and in today's world, no country will live by some other country's priorities", Pant said. India strongly condemns the acts of cross-border terror perpetrated against the people of Afghanistan.

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