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December 10, 2023

Taliban back usage of India-built Chabahar port, says ready to provide facilities

The Chabahar port in Iran, which was built by India, has received support for its use and has been offered “facilities” by the Taliban government in Afghanistan. In a statement, the foreign ministry of the Taliban “welcomed” the “plan to integrate” Chabahar Port in the North-South International Transport Corridor, which runs through Iran and Azerbaijan and connects Mumbai to Moscow. India is developing the first phase of Shahid Beheshti Port in Chabahar & has invested $ 85 million in the project as it provides it greater connectivity across the region, especially to landlocked central Asia, and the statement highlighted that the regime stands “ready to provide all necessary protection and facilities in this regard.”
It has also supplied 6 Mobile Habour Cranes-two 140 tons & four 100 tons capacities and other equipment worth $25 Million.

In the past, the port has been utilized to ship aid supplies to Afghanistan. In 2020, India sent 75,000 MTs of wheat to Afghanistan as humanitarian food aid through the port of Chabahar. The port has handled 215 boats and 4 million tonnes of bulk and general cargo since December 2018, when India Ports Global Limited (IPGL), an Indian corporation, took over operations.
Even though it has been supportive of Indian investment, the rebirth of Indian infrastructure, and development projects in the nation, the Taliban has commented on the Chabahar port.

During a meeting with the head of India’s technical team in the country, Bharat Kumar, the Taliban’s minister for urban development and housing (MUDH), Hamdullah Nomani, made a plea for Indian involvement in the construction of a new Kabul metropolis.
The National Security Advisors from India and Central Asia met earlier this week in Delhi, where the situation in Afghanistan and connectivity were major topics of discussion. The Taliban statement followed the meeting. The joint communique of the meeting, which affirmed “support for a stable, peaceful, integrated, and secure Afghanistan..and the principle of non-interference in Afghanistan’s internal affairs.,” was acknowledged in the statement, which also welcomed the gathering.

Taliban in the statement assured that it “remains committed and will not allow anyone to pose a threat to the region and the world from Afghanistan’s soil or to interfere in other’s internal affairs”. The worry remains over Afghanistan becoming a safe haven for international terror groups, and India is concerned that Pakistan-based UN-designated terror groups like JeM, and LeT may find space in the war-raved country.

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