25 February, 2021

'We Are Not Against Any Country'

Afghan foreign minister Abdullah Abdullah was a close associate of legendary Tajik fighter Ahmad Shah Masood. A qualified doctor, the soft-spoken Abdullah carries a strong message. He spoke to Outlook in Washington. Excerpts:

T. Narayan
'We Are Not Against Any Country'
How do you view Pakistan's role in Afghanistan?
Pakistan is helping us in reconstruction and in some other areas like trade and transit. But in the security area, we hope Pakistan will do more. The fact that they are arresting Al Qaeda is good, but our point is that the Taliban are just as dangerous and are against Pakistan's interest. The problem is that they deny Taliban are there. They ask us for evidence. Just the fact they ask us for evidence, you won't be encouraged. The changes inside Afghanistan are positive and not against any country. This realisation will help the situation. We want and expect a better realisation from friends.

Why does Pakistan view India's role in Afghanistan with suspicion?
It is very unfortunate. We want good relations with all our neighbours. India is helping us a great deal and it has a legitimate interest in the region. A stable Afghanistan is in India's interest. But we keep hearing irrelevant things from Pakistan about Indian activities. Indian consulates are functioning within the boundaries of consulate activity....

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