India seeks close contact with Russia on Afghanistan: Envoy

India is interested in close contact with Russia on Afghanistan issues, Russian Ambassador to New Delhi Denis Alipov said on Tuesday as quoted by TASS.

Earlier, Russia proposed a new five-party G5 format for settlement in the country.

“India is interested in close coordination with us on solving the Afghan problem, and I think that this format, like the Moscow format, which also exists, has good prospects,” Alipov said.

According to the diplomat, the current contradictions between India and Pakistan will not hamper the interaction between Russia and India on Afghanistan.

Russian Special Presidential Envoy for Afghanistan and Director of the Foreign Ministry’s Second Asian Department Zamir Kabulov said earlier that the five-party format involves the participation of Russia, India, Pakistan, Iran and China. He stressed that as part of this format the participating countries “will not interfere” in the internal affairs of Afghanistan.

A former Afghan diplomat, Noorullah Raghi, said that an increase in insurgency and drug trafficking has created concerns among countries in the region, especially Russia and India, who see it as a threat to their security.

“No doubt, the efforts by India, Russia and other countries in the region are a sign of their feeling of threat from Afghanistan,” he added.

“As long as US was in Afghanistan, the security of India, Russia and Iran was ensured,” said Wali Frozan, a political affairs analyst. “With the US withdrawal, extremist groups that have seven decades of roots in Pakistan are posing more threats to the region.”

On Wednesday, the Taliban meanwhile rejected claims by Russia that Daesh has a foothold in northern Afghanistan and that other terrorist groups are in the country.