India, US discuss Afghan reconciliation process

MArc Grossman

Reviewing the situation in Afghanistan, India and the US today discussed ways to enhance their partnership for the "Afghan-led and Afghan-owned" reconciliation process.

US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan (AfPak) Marc Grossman met Foreign Secretary Ranjan Mathai and held discussions on the reconciliation process to bring peace to the war-torn nation.

"We reviewed the situation and I appreciate his (Mathai's) desire to continue the conversation between India and the US on this issue," he told reporters after the meeting.

Grossman, whose request to visit Pakistan was turned down by the government there, will be travelling to Afghanistan tomorrow.

He said he will hold discussions with Afghan President Hamid Karzai tomorrow after which the US will decide on its next course of action.

US believes that India has a role to play in Afghanistan and has been continuously engaged in discussions over the peace process.

Stressing that ties between Afghanistan and Pakistan are "hugely important", Grossman also said the US would continue to reinforce its conversation with Pakistan on the situation in Afghanistan and pitched the need for reviving trilateral dialogue.

"Obviously, the issue of relationship between Pakistan and Afghanistan are hugely important. We would like to continue to reinforce conversation on that issue as well. We encourage dialogue between Pakistan and Afghanistan and we would like to see revival of the (trilateral) core group," he said.

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