NSAs from Central Asia and India focus on Afghanistan at Kazakh meeting

Afghanistan’s development has been a focal point at this week’s meeting of the Security Council Secretaries of Central Asian countries and India, in Kazakhstan’s capital Astana. In addition, participants also discussed ways to counter terrorism and extremism.

This was the group’s second meeting. India’s national security advisor, Ajit Doval briefed his counterparts that Delhi supports an inclusive government in Afghanistan that respects the rights of minorities and women.

He also pledged his country’s support to provide humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan.
“The situation in Afghanistan remains a cause of concern for all of us,” Doval was quoted by The Hindu as saying.

“Our common immediate priorities include providing humanitarian assistance, ensuring the formation of a truly inclusive and representative government combating terrorism and drug trafficking, and preserving the rights of women, children and minorities.”

Russia’s news agency TASS also reported that Afghanistan’s situation was discussed among the participants.

Farooq Azzam, a university lecturer, said in his opinion the national security advisers “focused on the security challenges, lack of inclusive and national government, drug and weapon trafficking, restrictions on Afghan citizens and security threats from Afghanistan.”

According to TASS, several other issues related to counter-terrorism, drug trafficking and organized crime were also discussed.

The first round of the Security Council Secretaries of Central Asian countries and India was held on December 7, 2022, in New Delhi, where participants raised the same concerns about the security situation and terrorist activities in Afghanistan.

Political analyst Janat Fahim Chakari stated the major concerns of the Central Asian Nations and India are due to the security status of Afghanistan. “They should bring up these concerns clearly,” he suggested.

After the Taliban regained power in August 2021, the participants in many international summits on Afghanistan, expressed their concerns over emerging security and terrorism threats from the country to the region. They also criticized the oppressive violation of human rights and the lack of will for the formation of an inclusive government by the Taliban.