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indian humanitarian aid to afghanistan: Iran offers to transfer Indian wheat to Afghanistan

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Highlights

  • Iran offers India to help Afghanistan
  • Indian External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar had talks with Iranian counterpart
  • Pakistan is blocking the access of Indian wheat to Afghanistan

Tehran
Iran has come forward to send India’s humanitarian aid to Afghanistan. Iran has given an offer to India and said that it can send wheat and medicines to Afghanistan through our country. The proposal was made by Iran’s Foreign Minister Hussein Amir-Abdullahian during a telephonic conversation with India’s Foreign Minister S Jaishankar. Till now India was dependent on the mercy of Pakistan to provide this help.

S Jaishankar had talks with the Foreign Minister of Iran on 8 January. On the same day, India also sent humanitarian aid to Afghanistan for the third time after the Taliban’s occupation. It is being told that Afghanistan was the main issue during this conversation. Iran said its country’s foreign minister stressed the need for an inclusive government in Afghanistan during the talks.

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What did the Iranian foreign minister offer?
During this conversation, the Iranian Foreign Minister referred to India’s humanitarian assistance to Afghanistan and mentioned the help of his country. He said that Iran will help in taking India’s humanitarian aid to Afghanistan. After this conversation, External Affairs Minister S Jaishankar tweeted that he discussed the difficulties of Kovid, the challenges in Afghanistan, the prospects of Chabahar and the complexities of the Iranian nuclear issue with the Iranian Foreign Minister.

What did Pakistan want from India?
Pakistan, showing its stubborn attitude, was creating new obstacles in the way of aid being sent to Afghanistan. Earlier Pakistan had said that Pakistani trucks would be used for wheat going from India. After that, when India rejected this offer, it was said that now this aid will be sent to Afghanistan through Afghan trucks. India also opposed this and said that there should be no condition on providing humanitarian aid.

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Why depend on Pak-Iran to help Afghanistan?
Actually, Afghanistan is a land surrounded by land on all sides. For this reason, to reach Afghanistan by road, the help of Pakistan or Iran has to be taken. Apart from this, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan and Tajikistan also share the border with Afghanistan. The border with China is very short and dangerous for roads. In such a situation, it is not easy to reach Afghanistan without the help of these countries.

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Now supply will be done through Chabahar port
Future supplies from India to Afghanistan will be made through the Chabahar port. India has invested heavily in this port. On 24 December 2018, India Ports Global Limited, a subsidiary of India Ports Global Chabahar Free Zone (IPGCFZ), took over the operations of Chabahar port. Since December 2018, the port has imported and exported 160 vessels 14,420 TEU (twenty foot equivalent units) and 3.2 million tonnes of bulk and general cargo. India has been regularly sending relief to Afghanistan through the Chabahar port before Kabul came under the Taliban.

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