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India to Train Afghan Forces

Wednesday 5 October 2011

(The Hindu) – In a major development, India has agreed to mentor the Afghan security forces as they gear up to deal with the drawdown of foreign forces by 2014.

The proposal has been on the drawing board for six years since Afghanistan President Hamid Karzai first suggested it, but was not implemented as Pakistan was uncomfortable with the idea of India-trained forces on both its flanks.

The proposal to train the Afghan National Security Forces was included in the first-ever Strategic Partnership Agreement (SPA) signed on Tuesday by Mr. Karzai and Prime Minister Manmohan Singh during their third extensive meeting this year.

India has started stepping up its exposure to the security scenario in Afghanistan by operationalising an airbase in Tajikistan, which has since been used to strike at the top leadership of the Islamic Movement of Uzbekistan. It has also sought permission to reopen a hospital at Farkhor on the Afghan border.

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