• India called for an immediate comprehensive ceasefire in Afghanistan at UNSC meeting convened under Arria Formula (informally convened at request of UNSC member).
• India has been concerned that the Afghan peace process and premature withdrawal of NATO/ U.S. coalition forces could leave opportunities for terrorist networks that could target both Afghanistan and India.
• Earlier, this week U.S. announced to dramatically cut number of U.S. troops in Afghanistan.
India had proposed four requirements for peace and stability:
• Process had to be Afghan-led and Afghan-owned.
• Zero tolerance for terrorism.
• Protecting rights of women and minorities.
• Transit rights of Afghanistan should not be used by countries.
About Afghan Peace Process:
• In Feb, 2020 Taliban and US signed this deal in which the US agreed to withdraw its forces by mid-2021 in exchange the Taliban committed not attacking US forces and agreed to talk.
• Deal also provides for a prisoner swap and US to move UNSC to remove Taliban members from the sanctions list.
• However, there has been concern as UN reported that despite assurances from Taliban to US, Al Qaeda is active in Afghanistan, backed by Taliban.
Mains Paper 2: International Relations
Prelims level: Afghan Peace Process
Mains level: Highlights the proposal for peace and stability