Ahead of the US-India-Afghanistan trilateral talks in New York later this month and in the wake of President Ashraf Ghani’s recently concluded visit to New Delhi, Washington has praised India’s “generosity and focus” in helping Afghanistan become a stronger nation.
“We obviously support India’s generosity and focus on Afghanistan and willingness to help Afghanistan become a stronger, independent nation with stronger economic growth, as well as build capacity to defend itself and provide for the security of its people,” US State Department Deputy Spokesperson Mark Toner said in the daily press briefing in Washington on Thursday.
“The fact that India is willing to invest in that future — we view as a very positive sign and we appreciate India’s effort,” Toner said.
Following the US-India Strategic and Commercial Dialogue in August, US Secretary of State John Kerry said the US, India and Afghanistan would hold a trilateral meeting on the sidelines of the UN General Assembly session in September in which New Delhi’s investments in major Afghan infrastructure projects would be discussed. “I want to thank India for the important contribution that it has been making to the efforts in Afghanistan,” Kerry said during a joint press interaction following the Dialogue on August 30.
During President Ghani’s visit to New Delhi on Wednesday, India had pledged $1 billion for the support and development of “a unified, sovereign, democratic, peaceful, stable and prosperous Afghanistan”.