First India-Central Asia JWG will be held in Afghanistan

Mar 08: In pursuance of the decisions made during the India-Central Asia Summit in 2022, India hosted the first India-Central Asia Joint Working Group on Afghanistan on 07 March 2023. The meeting was attended by the Special Envoys/Senior Officials of the Republic of India, the Republic of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, the Republic of Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and the Republic of Uzbekistan. Country representatives of the United Nations Office on Drugs and Crimes (UNODC) and the United Nations World Food Programme (UNWFP) also participated in the meeting.

The Joint Working Group (JWG) meeting was an opportunity for the regional countries to discuss important issues related to Afghanistan. The discussions were constructive and guided by the interests and welfare of common Afghans. During the meeting, the participants exchanged views on the current situation, including the political, security and humanitarian situation in Afghanistan. The participants emphasized the importance of the formation of a truly inclusive and representative political structure that respects the rights of all Afghans and ensures equal rights for women, girls and members of minority groups, including access to education.

Upon the requests of UNODC and Central Asian Republics, the Indian side offered customized capacity-building courses for their relevant stakeholders/officials. Moreover, India and UNODC also agreed to partner in the efforts to counter drug trafficking, including the efforts for rehabilitation of the Afghan drug user population, especially the Afghan women and providing assistance in the development of alternate livelihood opportunities.

To address the current humanitarian situation, the Indian side announced its partnership with UNWFP for the delivery of 20,000 MTs of wheat to Afghan people through the Chabahar Port.

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