EAM Jaishankar meets top Russian security official

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New Delhi: External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Wednesday held “useful discussions” with Russia’s Secretary of the Security Council Nikolai Patrushev on the situation in Afghanistan.

Patrushev met Jaishankar after holding wide-ranging talks with NSA Ajit Doval with a focus on possible security threats to the region from the Taliban-ruled Afghanistan.

“Glad to meet Secretary of Security Council of Russia, Nikolai Patrushev. Very useful discussions on Afghanistan,” Jaishankar tweeted.

Patrushev arrived here on Tuesday on a two-day visit as a follow-up to the telephonic conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin on August 24.

“A wide range of issues of the Russian-Indian bilateral cooperation was discussed. An exchange of views took place on a number of international and regional problems, including the situation in Afghanistan,” said a Russian read-out of the Jaishankar-Patrushev meeting.

India has been in touch with all leading powers on the developments in Afghanistan following the withdrawal of troops by the US.

Three weeks after taking control of Kabul, the Taliban on Tuesday unveiled a “caretaker” government headed by Mohammad Hasan Akhund.

Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin had on August 24 discussed the developments in Afghanistan and expressed the view that it was important for the two countries to work together.

There have been mounting concerns in India over the possibility of a rise in activities of various terror groups, including Lashkar-e-Toiba and Jaish-e-Mohammed, from Taliban-controlled Afghanistan.

Last week, Indian Ambassador to Qatar Deepak Mittal met senior Taliban leader Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai in Doha and conveyed to him that Afghanistan’s soil should not be used for anti-India activities and terrorism.

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