India-Central Asia Summit: PM Modi Discusses Afghanistan Crisis & Other Bilateral Issues

New Delhi: Prime Minister Narendra Modi on Thursday hosted the first-ever India-Central Asia Summit to discuss trade and connectivity, development partnership, culture, and people-to-people ties between several Central Asian nations.

The meeting, hosted virtually, was attended by Presidents of Kazakhstan, the Kyrgyz Republic, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan.

During the meeting, PM Modi said that all of Central Asian nations share the same concerns and goals with regard to regional security

The issue of Afghanistan crisis was also discussed during the meeting. “We are all concerned about the developments in Afghanistan. In this context too, mutual cooperation among us has become more important for regional security and stability,” PM Modi said.

Later on, PM Modi went on to list three important goals for today’s summit.

First Goal: “First is to make it clear that mutual cooperation between India and Central Asia is necessary for regional security and prosperity. I want to make it clear that Central Asia is central to India’s vision of an integrated and stable neighbourhood,” PM Modi said.

Second Goal: “The second goal of today’s meeting is to give an effective structure to our cooperation, which will pave the way for the establishment of a platform for regular interaction among all stakeholders,” he said.

Third Goal: “The third goal is to prepare an ambitious roadmap for our cooperation, which will enable us to adopt an integrated approach for regional connectivity and cooperation,” PM added.

The Prime Minister also greeted Presidents of Central Asian nations for completion of 30 years of diplomatic relations.

“Diplomatic relations between India and Central Asia countries have completed 30 fruitful years. Our cooperation has achieved many successes over the past three decades. And now, at this crucial juncture, let us define an ambitious vision for years to come as well,” PM Modi said.

PM Modi also said that India has deep relations with all of the Central Asian countries. “Kazakhstan has become an important partner in India’s energy security. I express my condoles at the recent loss of lives in Kazakhstan,” he said.

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The was the first engagement of its kind between India and the Central Asian countries at the level of leaders.

It must also be noted that PM Modi had personally visited all Central Asian countries in 2015 and there have been high-level exchanges at bilateral and multilateral forums.

The last India-Central Asia Dialogue at the Foreign Ministers’ level, held in New Delhi from December 18-20, provided an impetus to India-Central Asia relations. The meeting had also outlined a common regional approach towards Afghanistan.