Indian influence in Afghanistan overestimated by Pakistan: top Obama official

"Pakistan will not have a bright future until and unless it goes after the Taliban," said Special US Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Olson.

By: PTI | Washington | Updated: June 21, 2016 8:55 pm
Pakistan, Afghanistan, Pakistan afghanistan border, Taliba, Afghanistan Taliban, durand line, india, india afghanistan, indian influnce in afghanistan, US afghanistan, US pakistan, US india, USA, Richard Olson, Olson, Pakistan news, Afghanistan news, india news Pakistani traders protest recent clashes on the border with Afghanistan during a demonstration in Peshawar, Pakistan. REUTERS/Khuram Parvez

Pakistan’s concerns on India’s role in Afghanistan are “overestimated”, a top Obama Administration official said today and warned that the country will not have a “bright future” unless it takes action against terror groups like Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani network.

“India has been a supportive partner for Afghanistan. It has provided a limited amount but important military assistance (to Afghanistan),” the Special US Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan, Richard Olson, told a Washington audience at the Atlantic Council, a top American think-tank.

“I sometime feel that the degree of Indian influence on Afghanistan may be overestimated in Pakistan,” Olson said when asked about apprehensions about Indian influence in Afghanistan.

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Olson who before taking up this assignment was the US Ambassador to Pakistan referred to the quite often heard Pakistani narrative that there are 24 Indian consulates in Afghanistan.

The fact is, he said, there are “four Indian consulates in Afghanistan” as against the Pakistani narrative.

Noting that Pakistan has its own security concerns, Olson said that the United States believes that “Pakistan will not be secure, until and unless” it takes actions against terrorist organisations, in particular the Afghan Taliban and the Haqqani network that take terrorist actions against its neighbours.

Praising Pakistan for launching its anti-terror campaigns in Waziristan, Olson said Pakistan is now experiencing lower level of violence and its economy has stabilised.

However, the challenge for Pakistan has been its reluctance to take strong actions against terrorist networks that go after its neighbours.

“Pakistan will not have a bright future until and unless it goes after the Taliban,” Olson said, adding that in that sense it needs consolidation of its anti-terrorist actions against these groups.

Taliban, he said, has consolidated itself under the new leadership.

There clearly is a role for other countries in the region, but for the moment the challenge is to keep the negotiations going.

Responding to a question, Olson said Pakistan remains committed to the peace process and this needs to be encouraged.

He also urged Pakistan to use its relationship to bring the Taliban to the peace table.

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  1. R
    Jun 21, 2016 at 4:58 pm
    Being obsessed with India is what s do!
    1. Purna Varma
      Jun 21, 2016 at 6:36 pm
      What Richard did not mention is that these set of ISI trained fighters (who are usually hard core drug addicts programmed to die) are inter changeable between Taliban / Haqqani / JET/ Lakshar Toiba etc etc. It is only left to these terrorist orgs to anounce who claims the atrocity. Well you reap what you sow.
      1. R
        Ramana MV
        Jun 22, 2016 at 3:42 am
        stan's hatred towards India, its ability to lure the corrupt coupled with China's greed and West's love for itself and indifference to other democracies has caused lot of damage to our country. Add manmohan's and congress party's feudal subservience to the hi family which is intellectually substandard and always self serving has dented the confidence of common people in learned men and women. TV broadcast of Rajyasabha's sleeping or barking elders has woken up the country to great vacuum. Who is interested in the country? Supreme Court and judiciary in general sounds like hi family. They are also self serving in the name of protecting the consution. They serve the rich and famous. Now they blame others for not enough resources! To add insult to injury they elect Kejriwal and gang who have no respect for a fellow human being and who are as greedy ad Chinese rich. Indian Communists speak ideology but never follow it. It is known to everybody. A large potion thinks they are not livjng in their own country unless all the streets are occupied by them. How can such India influence anybody? stan has already done enough damage and they know it. Else how can two ec senior ministers speak whatever they want? How can people of a state raise slogans against the country which feeds them? How can some hyderabad hooligans laugh at the country that gave them shelter? stan and islam have insulted Hindus by calling them intolerant while having closed societies where they are in majority. No police can even enter Hyderabads old city full of muslim underworld? What do bjp, rss, congress, communists know? They are fools. India has become stan. stan has succeeded. There is so much violence already. Every religion has their own rules. We cannot integrate people in our country. How can we influence others. US is unaware that Pak is not overestmating, they are finishing India as a country.
        1. R
          Jun 22, 2016 at 2:27 am
          If stan forgets kashmir issue then only it can direct all its energy in the development of countrysted they spend money and manpower to support terroristsdia has become so strong that stan can never harm it.
          1. S
            Jun 22, 2016 at 3:22 am
            "If stan forgets Kashmir ..." Its like asking stan not to breath; then stan will cease to exist. All the militants that stan reared will end up fighting among themselves and at the end of the day stan will implode within itself. It will be India's Afghanistan.
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