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India signs MoU to train Afghan police.

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India and Afghanistan exchanged a memorandum of understanding on Thursday, which will see Afghan police forces trained in India for the first time. The agreement followed a meeting between Afghanistan Chief Executive Dr. Abdullah Abdullah and Prime Minister Narendra Modi here.

“Prime Minister [Modi] reiterated India’s commitment to extend full support to Afghanistan’s efforts for building a peaceful, united, prosperous, inclusive and democratic Afghanistan,” said a statement from the Ministry of External Affairs.

“The two leaders exchanged views on the security environment in Afghanistan and the extended region, and, in this context, agreed to continue close coordination and cooperation,” the statement added.

As The Hindu had reported last week, the MoU on Technical Cooperation on Police Training and Development will see India expand its capacity building of Afghan troops to include policemen and security forces, who are facing the brunt of Taliban attacks in the country, under a UN Development Programme project.

Dr. Abdullah’s visit was delayed by a day due to a sustained rocket attack on Kabul airport even as U.S. Defence Secretary James Mattis landed there. The attacks also prevented Dr. Abdullah from inaugurating the India-Afghanistan trade and investment exhibition in New Delhi, sponsored by the United States Agency for International Development.

Dr. Abdullah, who is in India on a “working-visit”, also met with External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj and President Ram Nath Kovind, and discussed deals under the Strategic Partnership Council this month, which included an Indian commitment to 116 “New Development Projects” as well as enhanced security cooperation.

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