Colombo, September 14: With Pakistan ensconced in the driver’s seat in Kabul, India, which is currently marginalized, has chosen to take the humanitarian path to re-enter and re-establish its relevance in Afghanistan.
Making an intervention at the UN High-Level Meeting on the ‘Humanitarian Situation in Afghanistan 2021’ on Monday, Indian External Affairs Minister S.Jaishankar warned that if the present humanitarian crisis, manifested in increasing poverty, continues in Afghanistan, the stability of the region will be adversely affected.
Jaishankar called upon the global community to get together and send relief under the auspices of the United Nations. He voiced India’s concern about rising poverty in Afghanistan and sought unfettered access to international humanitarian assistance under the auspices of the United Nations.
Without mentioning the Taliban or the Taliban government, even in passing, Jaishankar highlighted India’s past efforts in helping the “people of Afghanistan” and said India is ready to send humanitarian aid to the Afghan people if there is unrestricted access and the aid is distributed to all sections of society in a “non-discriminatory manner.”
He called for the resumption of commercial flights to Kabul in order to provide humanitarian access to the country. Among the challenges that the current situation is posing is that of efficient logistics, he said, and added that only the United Nations has the capacity to monitor such endeavors and reassure donors.
Jaishankar said that in the last two years India had given more than one million tons of grain and also protein-rich biscuits to children. He drew attention to the fact that Indian development projects in Afghanistan amounts to US$ 3 billion. Its 500 projects are spread over all the provinces of Afghanistan.
Jaishankar called upon the global community to help create the best possible enabling environment in Afghanistan.