Doval, SCO NSAs to discuss rise in Afghanistan drug trade, terrorism : The Tribune India

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Doval, SCO NSAs to discuss rise in Afghanistan drug trade, terrorism

Doval, SCO NSAs to discuss rise in Afghanistan drug trade, terrorism

Picture for representational purpose only.



Tribune News Service

New Delhi, March 12

The exponential rise in terrorism and drug production in Afghanistan will be the focus of discussion when National Security Advisers (NSAs) from the Shanghai Cooperation Organisation (SCO) meet here on March 29.

Contraband being pumped into india

The drugs from Afghanistan, according to security officials, are also being pumped into India via drones and shipping consignments and some of it has funded terrorism in J&K.

Central Asian NSAs had spoken extensively on drug trafficking rampant in the region when NSA Ajit Doval had hosted them for a meeting here in December last year. The drugs from Afghanistan, according to security officials, are also being pumped into India via drones and shipping consignments and some of it has funded terrorism in J&K.

The first UN report since the US abruptly left Kabul has said opium cultivation has increased by nearly one-third even as the rudimentary Taliban government battles terrorism and humanitarian and economic crises. Kyrgyz NSA Marat Imankulov had said the common interest of the six NSAs was to combat terrorism, extremism and drug trafficking as well as resolving the situation in Afghanistan.

This meeting is also likely to take up the issue of a potential nexus between ISIS, which is creating havoc in Afghanistan with its brutal bombings, and the money flowing in from the burgeoning drug trade. This aspect was also taken up in the December meeting of Doval and the five Central Asian NSAs. The expectation is that the Taliban must take decisive action on terrorism and drug smuggling.

Of interest will be whether the Chinese and Pakistani NSAs will attend the meeting being held by India as the current chair of the SCO. Pakistan had reluctantly participated via video-conferencing in the meeting of SCO Chief Justices, which ended here on Sunday. The signals sent for the NSAs meeting will indicate whether Pakistan Foreign Minister Bilawal Bhutto Zardari will attend the SCO ministerial in Goa in May. Pakistan last Thursday said it had yet not decided upon attending this meeting.

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