What India can look forward to in the Afghan peace talks with the Taliban

Taliban say committed to Afghan peace talks, want 'genuine Islamic system'

Peace talks between the Qatari capital, Doha, and the Afghan government, the US, and the Taliban are taking place in the capital, Doha, following an agreement to withdraw US troops from Afghanistan. India takes peace talks with the Taliban seriously. The Taliban has appointed Sheikh Abdul Hakim as the chief negotiator for the talks. Many of the Taliban negotiators’ names are in line with Pakistan’s expectations. The Indian Express reports that the Pakistan Army and ISI have played a crucial role in the US-Taliban deal itself.

India has no role to play in the US-Taliban talks and the Afghan peace process that began two years ago. India, which supports the Afghan government, has stated that the peace talks should be led by the Afghan government. India is already uninterested in talks with a Taliban partner. India is concerned that Pakistan is trying to drive the backseat by bringing the Taliban to power in Afghanistan. India believes that this will greatly endanger the security situation in the region.

One of the major issues is the Taliban’s links with terrorist groups targeting India and Indian interests in Afghanistan. Iran is not interested in the Taliban returning to power in Afghanistan. But Iran has established ties with the Taliban. At the same time, India is not ready to establish ties with the Taliban. Salma Khalilzad, the US special envoy, has visited Delhi four times in two years as part of efforts to include India in the talks. Khalilzad had demanded that India hold direct talks with the Taliban to make the peace process effective. At the same time, India is adamant that it will not negotiate with the Taliban until they enter mainstream politics in Afghanistan.

India is worried that China will fill the vacancy left by the US. The Taliban have links to Uyghur militant groups in China. At the same time, India believes that its closeness with Pakistan may help China to intervene in Afghanistan. China has begun efforts to establish ties with the Taliban. India believes Pakistan may seek to extend China-Pakistan economic corridor to Afghanistan.