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Message from EAM at the inaugural event for training of Afghan Diplomats at FSI as part of joint programme with China

October 15, 2018

India and Afghanistan are close neighbours and strategic partners. The strong bonds of civilizational and historical connect and people to people exchanges provide very strong foundations of our warm, close and friendly ties in contemporary times.

India is committed to partner with Afghanistan in its efforts to emerge as a united, peaceful, secure, stable, inclusive and economically vibrant nation. Development partnership, based on the priorities of the Government and the people of Afghanistan has been the cornerstone of our multifaceted bilateral cooperation.

Guided by the vision of ‘Sabka Saath Sabka Vikas’, the Indian Government has embarked on an ambitious development partnership programme with commitment of over US $ 3 billion. This has four broad pillars: building infrastructure; developing human resource; enhancing connectivity; and promoting trade & investment links. India-Afghanistan Friendship dam in Herat, Parliament Building in Kabul, operationalization of Chabahar port are prominent symbols of this partnership.

Last year, we have embarked on the next generation New Development Partnership that aspires to bring prosperity to all 34 provinces of Afghanistan through High Impact Community Development projects; drinking water supply for Kabul city by building Shatoot / Lalandhar Dam; rehabilitation of refugees by providing low-cost housing in Nangarhar, among others.

High priority is attached to enable Afghanistan tap the true potential of its talented youth. An ambitious capacity building programme is being implemented through scholarship and training programmes for over 3,500 Afghan nationals every year in India. This year we started a scholarship scheme for the next of kin of martyrs of the Afghan National Defence & Security Forces as mark of our respect for the brave sons and daughters of Afghanistan who made the ultimate sacrifice for the defence of their country.

I am very happy that today we are chartering a new course with the beginning of a training programme for 10 diplomats from Afghanistan in partnership with China. The seeds for joint cooperation in Afghanistan were sown at the meeting between the Prime Minister of India and the President of China when they met in Wuhan in April 2018. Today, we see it blooming with the initiation of this training programme. This marks the beginning of what we visualize as a long term trilateral partnership for the benefit of Afghanistan.

I thank the Foreign Service Institute for organizing this programme. I wish all the participants from Afghanistan an enjoyable and comfortable stay and an enriching experience in India.

New Delhi
October 15, 2018

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