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Karzai Defends Ties with Iran

Service : Politic
TEHRAN, June 13 (ICANA) – Afghan President, Hamid Karzai, has defended strong ties with Iran and said he has made it clear to the US that Afghanistan will pursue ties with Iran.
Monday, June 13, 2011 6:51:12 PM
Karzai Defends Ties with Iran

In an exclusive interview with Pakistan’s state television the Afghan president said his country has been very clear with the US that Iran being its neighbor, having 900 kms of borders and sharing linguistic, cultural, religious links, “there is no way that Afghanistan cannot have relationship with it and we did it”.

He said that the US is helping Afghanistan a lot but their rivalry with Iran cannot take place in Afghanistan.

To a question, the Afghan president said, whatever the western countries might think, ultimately the Afghan people have to bear responsibility for protecting their country strengthening peace and stability.

He said that the Indian presence in Afghanistan cannot be used against the brotherly country. “Indian presence in Afghanistan is in no way and cannot be in any manner used against Pakistan”, President Karzai told PTV aired on Saturday night.

He said, however, India being an old friend of Afghanistan was helping it tremendously and providing financial assistance and “Pakistan should feel happy that Afghanistan is being helped by another neighbour.”

President Karzai termed the recent visit of Prime Minister Syed Yusuf Raza Gilani to Afghanistan ‘very important’ and said during that visit the two sides agreed to establish Pak-Afghan Peace Commission.

The Afghan President in this respect mentioned TAPI and CASA-1000, the trans-regional gas pipeline and electricity projects and said the two countries could also work together for benefit in hydro-power sector

Karzai said the regional cooperation particularly Pak-Afghan cooperation is very important in this respect.

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