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    Kashmiri Muslim protesters hold a flag of Islamic State as they shout anti-India slogans during a protest in Srinagar, Indian controlled Kashmir, Friday, April 8, 2016

    Afghan Envoy Advocates Trilateral Security Dialogue With India, US

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    During a conference hosted by Brookings India, Dr. Shaida Mohammad Abdali, the Afghanistan Ambassador to India, has said that a trilateral strategic dialogue between India, Afghanistan and the United States will soon be revived to take on regional challenges, especially terrorism.

    New Delhi (Sputnik) — Experts in India, however, said New Delhi shouldn't ignore the new realities and the great game going on in Afghanistan where other significant players have emerged, including Russia.

    The Ambassador said the idea of trilateral strategic dialogue has been long discussed but never operationalized.

    "Reactivation of that strategic dialogue, especially in the context of the war on terrorism, is highly desired. The three of us are affected a lot by the phenomenon of terrorism and can decide on a strategy while taking others in the region along with a more effective strategy," Dr. Abdali said at the event in New Delhi.

    The US still hasn't thought out about its strategy and India should keep that in mind while also factoring in other emerging players, including Russia, which wield influence and have stakes in the Afghan conflict.

    "The US strategy under President Donald Trump is still evolving and we don't know how it will pan out. India in the past thought that merely aligning with the US could protect its interests in Afghanistan, which now seem to be going nowhere. Russia, meanwhile, has emerged as a key player and is taking initiatives to push a negotiated settlement. Moscow invited us in those negotiations and we should not miss such opportunities," former diplomat P. Stobdan told Sputnik.

    The Afghan Ambassador said that India is doing a lot on the military front but not many know about it in the public domain.

    India has already supplied several utility and attack helicopters and has recently agreed to refurbish several Soviet-era transport aircraft grounded in Afghanistan.

    Kabul has also given a wish list of military items, which includes artillery guns, tanks, ammunition among others.

    "India also needs to step up its contribution to strengthening the Afghan National Army. Russia could be a vital link due to defense ties with India," Stobdan added.

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    Shaida Mohammad Abdali, United States, India, Afghanistan
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