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The achievements of the last two decades must be preserved: Prime Minister Modi on the Afghan peace process | India News


NEW DELHI: The Afghan peace process must be “led, owned and controlled” by Afghanistan and the achievements of the past two decades must be preserved, Prime Minister Narendra Modi said on Friday.
In his opening remarks at a virtual summit with Uzbekistan President Shavkat Mirziyoyev, Modi also said that India and Uzbekistan are firmly united against terrorism and have similar concerns about extremism, fundamentalism and separatism.
“We have similar concerns about extremism, fundamentalism and separatism. We are both firmly united against terrorism. We also have a similar approach on regional security issues,” the prime minister said.
“We agree that the restoration of peace in Afghanistan requires a process that, in itself, is led, owned and controlled by Afghanistan. It is also necessary to preserve the achievements of the last two decades,” he said.
The prime minister’s comments on Afghanistan come amid renewed momentum in the Afghan peace process. Afghan senior peace negotiator Abdullah Abdullah and several other senior Afghan leaders visited India in recent months to learn about the peace process.
In his comments, Modi also said that India wants to further intensify its development partnership with Uzbekistan and expressed his happiness that many projects in that country are being considered under the Indian Credit Line.
Uzbekistan is a key country in Central Asia that India considers its “extended neighborhood”. The bilateral ties now encompass a broader canvas of cooperation that includes areas of defense and security, trade and investment, energy, agriculture, education, and science and technology.
Both countries are currently negotiating a bilateral investment treaty (BIT) and a preferential trade agreement. Last year, a pact was signed that provides for the long-term purchase of uranium by India from Uzbekistan.
In his remarks, the prime minister also referred to cooperation between the two countries in key areas of the defense, space and atomic energy sectors.
“Our security partnership is becoming a strong pillar of bilateral relations. Last year, the first joint military exercise between our armed forces was held. Our joint efforts are also increasing in the areas of space and atomic energy.” , said.
Modi also said that India was willing to share its experience and knowledge with Uzbekistan according to its development priorities.
“India has great potential in areas such as infrastructure, IT, education, health, training and capacity building, which can be useful for Uzbekistan. The establishment of a joint working group on agriculture among us is an important and positive step,” said. .
“With this we can find opportunities to increase our agricultural trade that will help farmers in both countries,” he added.
Modi also spoke about the cooperation between the two countries during the coronavirus pandemic.
“It is also a source of satisfaction that during this difficult time of the COVID-19 epidemic, both countries have fully supported each other, either to supply medicines or to ensure the return of each other’s citizens to their homes,” he said.

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