New Delhi hoping to normalize ties with Kabul, says Indian official

India’s Foreign Ministry is ironing out obstacles in order to strengthen diplomatic ties with the Islamic Emirate of Afghanistan (IEA), an Indian official said Sunday.

According to Arindam Bagchi, a spokesman for India’s Foreign Ministry, historic ties between New Delhi and Kabul will however determine India’s future approach with Afghanistan.

This comes after a diplomatic delegation held talks in Kabul with IEA leaders this past week.

“Our historical and civilizational ties with the people of Afghanistan will guide our approach to what we do in this country. Currently, a number of our local staff are in Afghanistan to coordinate more humanitarian assistance to the people of Afghanistan. There are problems that we are trying to solve through diplomacy,” said Bagchi.

He also confirmed that Afghanistan’s Embassy has reopened in New Delhi.

Bagchi further stated that India continues its strategy in terms of recognition of the IEA in harmony with the international community.

“If they meet the specific standards set by the international community, there is a chance of recognition. But it seems that there have not yet been major changes in the behavior of the IEA’s rulers,” a former Indian diplomat said.

“Women and girls are deprived of education and work. Inclusive government has not yet been formed. The concerns of the world about the address of terrorism have not been reassured, so we think it all depends on their behavior,” he said.

A number of top IEA leaders met with the visiting Indian delegation last week and urged New Delhi to resume work on development projects that ground to a halt when the former government collapsed in August last year.