India, Russia to form permanent channel for consultations on Afghan crisis

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Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin
Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin

New Delhi [India] August 24 (ANI): India and Russia on Tuesday agreed to set up a "permanent bilateral channel" for consultations on the issues arising in Afghanistan from the Taliban takeover of the country.

The decision came following a telephonic conversation between Prime Minister Narendra Modi and Russian President Vladimir Putin, a statement from the office of President of Russia said.

During the exchange of views, "the parties noted the importance of concerted efforts which would contribute to the establishment of peace and stability in this country, ensuring security in the region as a whole," the Russian Embassy statement said.

"They agreed to establish a two-way channel for permanent consultations on this issue," it added.

The two leaders also expressed intention to enhance cooperation on countering the dissemination of the terrorist ideology and the drug threat emanating from the territory of Afghanistan.

A number of questions pertained to further development of the Russian-Indian relations of the special and privileged strategic partnership, including in trade and economy, were also touched upon.

Both the leaders also discussed the schedule of future contacts at various levels.

PM Modi also tweeted after his conversation. "Had a detailed and useful exchange of views with my friend President Putin on recent developments in Afghanistan. We also discussed issues on the bilateral agenda, including India-Russia cooperation against COVID-19. We agreed to continue close consultations on important issues."

National Security Advisors from the five BRICS countries (Brazil, Russia, India, China and South Africa) met virtually to discuss developments in Afghanistan. On the agenda was cooperation among law enforcement agencies, health safety and healthcare and counter-terrorism. (ANI)

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