Afghanistan: Pakistan to view India’s request for wheat delivery to Afghanistan ‘favorably’

NEW DELHI: Pakistan Prime Minister Imran Khan said on Friday that Islamabad would look favorably on India’s proposal to deliver wheat to Afghanistan through the land route through Pakistan.
While India has yet to hear official news from Pakistan on the proposal, the announcement from Khan’s office remains significant as the Pakistani prime minister’s assurance comes in a meeting with the Taliban Acting Minister of Foreign Affairs, Amir Khan Muttaqi, in Islamabad. He also comes against the recent performance of the play which saw Pakistan NSA Moeed Yusuf calling India a spoiler in Afghanistan and rejecting India’s invitation to participate in the NSA conference held by India this week.
TOI had first reported on October 19 that India was seeking to transport 50,000 MT to Afghanistan and was in contact with Pakistan to deliver it across the Wagah-Attari border.
“ The Prime Minister conveyed that, in the current context, Pakistan would favorably consider the request of the Afghan brothers for the transport of wheat offered by India through Pakistan on an exceptional basis for humanitarian purposes and according to the modalities that will be developed ” the Pakistan PMO tweeted after Khan’s meeting with Muttaqi.
Former Indian High Commissioner in Pakistan TCA Raghavan He said land transportation through Pakistan can set a good precedent for regional cooperation. “ If land transportation through Pakistan takes place, it would be helpful for Afghanistan and would also set a good precedent for regional cooperation, ” Raghavan said.
Pakistan, in 2002, when India sought to help Afghanistan caught in a similar humanitarian crisis, had rejected India’s request for wheat delivery to Afghanistan across the land border. Since then he has rejected all those Indian requests.
After reaching out to Pakistan to facilitate the delivery of wheat, India had officially offered Afghanistan assistance in a meeting with a Taliban delegation on the sidelines of the Moscow Format meeting in Moscow. While the Taliban announced almost immediately that India had offered assistance, a few days later, the Taliban’s designated ambassador to the UN, Suhail Shaheen, told TOI that the Taliban were ready to accept aid from India and also to receive Indian diplomats. and provide security for them to carry out their normal diplomatic duties.
Since Wednesday’s NSA conference, the Taliban twice welcomed the NSA-chaired meeting Ajit Doval and said they want to have good diplomatic relations with India.
India remains a major supplier of wheat to Afghanistan and had delivered 75,000 tonnes of grain to Afghanistan in 2020 through the Iranian port of Chabahar. The government wants the UN to control the distribution to ensure that it is not discriminatory.

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