PM Modi chairs high-level meeting with top govt officials amid Afghan crisis
Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Tuesday chaired a meeting of the Cabinet Committee on Security against the backdrop of the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.
Home Minister Amit Shah,Defence Minister Rajnath Singh and Finance Minister Nirmala Sitharaman attended the meeting, besides senior officials.
Those present in the meeting also included National Security Advisor Ajit Doval and Foreign Secretary Harsh Vardhan Shringla, as also India’s Ambassador to Afghanistan Rudrendra Tandon, who returned to India on Tuesday itself.
The Indian Embassy was shut on Monday as the situation in Kabul worsened amid the Taliban takeover of Afghanistan.
The Indian Embassy staff will be evacuated from Kabul,the sources said,adding that staff is already winding up,arranging documents and other things required for the departure.
The Embassy will be left to local Afghan personnel for any operation,the sources said.
Meanwhile,an IAF aircraft,the C-17 Globemaster reached Kabul for evacuation of Indians.
However, after flight operations both military and civilian were halted due to disturbances, sources said that the flight would not be arriving in India by the intervening night of Monday and Tuesday.
Thousands of Afghans rushed onto the tarmac of Kabul’s international airport Monday,some so desperate to escape the Taliban capture of their country that they held onto an American military jet as it took off and plunged to death in chaos that killed at least seven people, U.S. officials said.
The crowds of people rushing the airport came as the Taliban enforced their rule over the wider capital after a lightning advance across the country that took just over a week to dethrone the country’s Western-backed government.
While there were no major reports of abuses, many stayed home and remained fearful as the insurgents advance saw prisons emptied and armories looted.
MEA to Extend Help to Afghan Sikhs, Hindus:
The Ministry of External Affairs said in statement that India will help members of Afghanistan’s tiny Sikh and Hindu community to come to India.
We are in constant touch with the representatives of Afghan Sikh and Hindu communities.We will facilitate repatriation to India of those who wish to leave Afghanistan,foreign ministry spokesman Arindam Bagchi said in a statement.
India invested millions of dollars in development projects in Afghanistan and Bagchi said the government stood by the Afghans who had partnered it in that task.
India Chairs UNSC Meet on Afghanistan,Says Concerned About Situation:
The United Nations Security Council,which led a meeting on the developing situation in Afghanistan on Monday,called for talks to create a new government in Afghanistan and an end to fighting and abuse after U.N.chief Antonio Guterres warned of chilling curbs on human rights and mounting violations against women and girls.
Today I’m speaking on behalf of millions of people in Afghanistan whose fate hangs in the balance and are faced with an extremely uncertain future, he said.
There is no time for blame game anymore.We have an opportunity to prevent further violence, prevent Afghanistan descending into a civil war and becoming a pariah state:Afghan Envoy at UN told media persons.
The 15-member council issued a statement, agreed by consensus, after Guterres appealed to the body to use all tools at its disposal to suppress a global terrorist threat from Afghanistan and guarantee respect for human rights.We cannot and must not abandon the people of Afghanistan,Guterres told the Security Council.
India,which is heading the UNSC Presidency for the month of August, said in the meeting that it was greatly concerned by the situation in Afghanistan amid the Taliban takeover, and said the country’s neighbours would feel safer if the Afghan land is not used for terrorism.
As a neighbour of Afghanistan and a friend to its people, the current situation prevailing in the country is of great concern to us in India.Afghan men, women and children are living under a constant state of fear.
They are uncertain about their future.Everyone is concerned about the increasing violations of the fundamental rights of Afghan citizens.Afghans are worried about whether their right to live with dignity would be respected,” said Ambassador TS Tirumurti.
He said the Council hopes the situation stabilizes soon, and the parties concerned address the humanitarian and security issues.
We also hope that there is an inclusive dispensation which represents all sections of Afghan society.
Voices of Afghan women,aspirations of Afghan children and the rights of minorities must be respected.
A broader representation would help the arrangement gain more acceptability and legitimacy,” he said.
Stop Blame Game’: Afghanistan at UNSC, US Urges Protection of Refugees:
Asserting that there is no time for blame game anymore,Afghanistan’s Permanent Representative to the UN Ghulam Isaczai said that the powerful Security Council and Guterres must not recognise any administration that achieves power through force.
Isaczai urged the UNSC to unequivocally state that it does not recognise the restoration of the Islamic Emirate.
For evacuations,India parked its C-17 at Ayni Air Base in Tajikistan as there was a huge rush at Kabul airport in Afghanistan.
So Indian aircraft were on standby at Ayni Air Base and they flew to Kabul when cleared by the US which is controlling Kabul Airport.
India is also exploring options to hire charter planes to evacuate more Indians from Afghanistan, reports says .
India to wait and watch that how inclusive will be the government formation and how will the Taliban conduct: Sources
India will also watch how other democracies react to the Taliban regime, say sources
There are security concerns that Afghanistan might become the first epicenter of Islamic terrorism which has a state, they have access to all the weapons which Americans have supplied and also the weapons of 3 lakh plus Afghan National Army personnel: Sources
Pakistan based groups like Lashkar-e-Taiba and Lashkar-e-Jhangvi have some presence in Afghanistan, they have built check posts in some villages and parts of Kabul, along with Taliban, say sources.
There will be increased security vigil in Kashmir but things are in control and Pakistan based groups in Afghanistan have little capacity to use the situation: Sources
Taliban has clarified its position on Kashmir. It regards it as a bilateral, internal issue; their focus is unlikely on Kashmir, say sources
Pakistan spy agency ISI will try and influence the Taliban. However, it will have very limited effect as the Taliban has acquired power in a position of strength. ISI can only influence weak Taliban but it looks unlikely in the present situation, say sources
Top Taliban leader leaves Qatar for Afghanistan;
A top Taliban official has met with a Qatari official before reportedly leaving the country for Afghanistan.
Mullah Abdul Ghani Baradar met with Qatar’s Foreign Minister Sheikh Mohammed bin Abdulrahman Al Thani on Tuesday.
In the past, there were camps of Pakistani outfits in Afghanistan. So we have to be careful in Jammu & Kashmir: Govt sources.