Prime Minister Narendra Modi today expressed concern over the humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan and said India was deeply affected by the chain of events taking place in the war-torn nation. Earlier, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had flagged this concern.
Speaking at the SCO-CSTO Outreach Summit on Afghanistan, held online amid the Covid pandemic, Prime Minister Modi highlighted the economic and humanitarian woes faced by the people of Afghanistan due to the recent developments.
“There’s a serious humanitarian crisis in Afghanistan. Due to obstacles in financial and trade flows, the economic constraints of the people of Afghanistan are on the rise. The Covid challenge is adding to the distress,” he said.
Talking about the Taliban takeover, the prime minister said that the recent change in power in that country was “not inclusive” and happened without any negotiations.
“This raises questions over the acceptance of the new system. The representation of women, minorities and all sections of Afghan society is essential,” the Prime Minister said.
He said neighbouring countries like India would be most affected by the crisis in Afghanistan and added that there is a strong need for regional focus and cooperation.
Prime Minister Modi said the developments in Afghanistan could lead to an “uncontrolled” flow of drugs, illegal weapons and human trafficking.
“A large number of advanced weapons remain in Afghanistan. Due to these, there will be a risk of instability in the entire region,” Modi said.
“If instability and fundamentalism continue in Afghanistan, terrorist and extremist ideologies will be encouraged across the world. Other extremist organisations might get the encouragement to grab the power through violence,” he said.
The Prime Minister said it was essential for the global community to take a decision on the recognition of the new system, collectively and with proper deliberation.
“All countries have been victims of terrorism, so together we should ensure that the land of Afghanistan is not used to spread terrorism in any country. SCO Member Nations should develop strict norms over this issue,” he said, adding that the nations should also ensure that humanitarian aid reaches Afghanistan in an unhindered manner.
The prime minister said India wanted the United Nations to play a central role amid the ongoing developments in Afghanistan.
‘Radicalisation biggest challenge to peace, security’
Speaking at the conference earlier, Prime Minister Modi had said the recent developments in Afghanistan have demonstrated that increasing radicalisation was the “root cause” of the biggest challenges relating to peace and security in the region.
“The 20th anniversary of the SCO is also a suitable occasion to think about the future of the SCO. I believe that the biggest challenges in this area are related to peace, security and trust deficit and the root cause of these problems is increasing radicalisation,” the Prime Minister said.
The recent developments in Afghanistan have made this challenge more apparent and the SCO should take an initiative on this issue, he asserted.
Fighting radicalisation is necessary not only for regional security and mutual trust but also for a bright future of our younger generations, Modi said.
The Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and the Collective Security Treaty Organization (CSTO) summit is being held in Dushanbe, Tajikistan in a hybrid format – virtual as well as in-person.