Five Muslim Nations skip Pak sponsored OIC meet to join India

New Delhi: In a recent development, five Muslim nations have skipped the important meeting of the OIC to join India at the third India-Central Asia Dialogue of Foreign Ministers in New Delhi. 

External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar on Sunday held separate talks with his counterparts from Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Turkmenistan, and Uzbekistan, covering bilateral cooperation in areas of security, energy, connectivity, health, and education. The nations have also talked about the concerns of India on Afghanistan. 

All five Central Asian nations are OIC members but their Foreign Ministers have chosen to attend the meeting in New Delhi instead, indicating a level of cooperation with India on Afghanistan that was highlighted during the Delhi Regional Security Dialogue of central Asian countries, Russia and Iran hosted by National Security Advisor Ajit Doval in Delhi in November.

Pakistan is trying to build its own grouping on the Afghanistan issue but the three countries Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan, and Tajikistan which share borders with Afghanistan have skipped the important meeting of OIC to join India in New Delhi.

The previous meeting had also coincided with a meeting of the “Troika plus” grouping of U.S.-Russia-China and Pakistan held in Islamabad to discuss Afghanistan.

Afghanistan- Core Issue

In a joint statement, the foreign ministers said the countries discussed the “current situation in Afghanistan and its impact on the region”. They “reiterated strong support for a peaceful, secure and stable Afghanistan while emphasizing the respect for sovereignty, unity and territorial integrity, and non-interference in its internal affairs,” the statement said.

“They also discussed the current humanitarian situation and decided to continue to provide immediate humanitarian assistance to the Afghan people.”

The ministers reaffirmed the importance of UNSC Resolution 2593 (2021) which “unequivocally demands that Afghan territory not be used for sheltering, training, planning, or financing terrorist acts, and called for concerted action against all terrorist groups,” the joint statement said.

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