India’s presence in Afghanistan perhaps ‘larger than it ought to be’, says Pakistan

By The Hindu

With India stepping up its diplomatic activities in Afghanistan’s peace process as the U.S. prepares for the troops withdrawal, a jittery Pakistan has said that at times it feels that New Delhi’s presence in the war-torn country is perhaps “larger than it ought to be”.

Pakistan Foreign Minister Shah Mahmood Qureshi’s remarks to Afghanistan’s Tolo news channel comes days after External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar met U.S. Special Representative for Afghanistan Reconciliation Zalmay Khalilzad in Qatar’s capital Doha on Tuesday and exchanged perspectives on the war-ravaged nation and the region.

“Obviously, you have sovereign relations and you have bilateral relations and you have every right to have sovereign and bilateral relations with India. You have trade with India. They come and carry out development work there, that’s completely fine with us,” Mr. Qureshi said during the interview which will be telecast on Saturday.

“But at times we feel that their presence is perhaps larger than it ought to be because they…don’t share a border with you,” he said, according to the excerpts of the interview posted by the news channel on its Twitter handle.

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