Regional dynamics does play a role in Afghanistan, the United States has acknowledged after former Afghan President Hamid Karzai’s remarks that situation in the country is dependent on America and Pakistan’s interest along with the two nations’ relations with India. “Well, as much as you know, regional dynamics play into any country’s domestic situation, there’s an element of truth to that, which is why we’re always working hard to push Pakistan to go after those terrorist groups that seek safe haven on their territory,” State Department Deputy Spokesman Mark Toner told reporters on Tuesday.
“We are pushing for more dialog between Pakistan and India, which we believe will help reduce tensions in the region. We have seen India play a more supportive role with regard to Afghanistan and support for the Afghan government,” he said.
Toner noted that for the conflict in Afghanistan, there’s a range of different regional dynamics that play into it.
“It’s just a matter of fact.
“But our goal is to continue to support the Afghan military as it steps up its fight against the Taliban and pushes much needed reforms in the economy and the democratic system,” he said, adding the US supports an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned peace process.
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Toner was responding to a question on Karzai’s latest statement that America and Pakistan’s interests and the two countries’ relations with India determine events in the war-torn Afghanistan.
“I think a combination… of the two, of the US interests in the region and Pakistani interests in Afghanistan and the nature of their relations with India has been determining events in Afghanistan – negatively, unfortunately,” Karzai told RT in an interview.
The deputy spokesman said America is supportive of the peace process and is not looking to engineer it, even as he refused to say anything on its role in the latest talks between the Afghan Government and the Taliban in Qatar.
“I’m not going to speak about what our role may or may not be with regard to this new initiative, but as we made clear before, we believe that a peace accord is really the primary or the only pathway to ensuring peace and stability long-term in Afghanistan,” Toner said.
“We have supported and continue to support an Afghan-led and Afghan-owned process for negotiated resolution to the conflict there. And we’re committed to promoting that as much as we can,” he said when being asked about the talks that took place in Doha.
While making it clear that the peace process needs to be Afghan-lead and Afghan-owned, Toner said the US is not looking to engineer or supervise it in any way, shape or form.
“This is something the Afghan government and the Taliban would have to take on their own,” he said.
Talking about the $13 billion deal in which Russia’s state-controlled oil giant Rosneft and its partners acquired India’s second biggest private oil firm Essar Oil, Toner said it is not in violation of any US-EU (European Union) sanctions against Russia.
“I don’t think we see any violation of any US or EU sanctions stemming from this deal,” he said while responding to questions about the deal.
“We’ve seen the reports in general about this oil deal. I’d refer you to the governments of India and Russia,” Toner said.