India to join meet on Afghanistan, Taliban to be in attendance
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India on Thursday confirmed its participation in a meeting of the Moscow Format dialogue on Afghanistan on October 20 that is set to be joined by representatives of the Taliban setup in Kabul. This will be the second time that the Indian side will come face-to-face with Taliban representatives at a Moscow Format meeting since 2018, and also the second formal contact between the two sides since the Taliban marched into Kabul on August 15 after the collapse of the Ashraf Ghani government.
India has so far held off on any formal recognition of the Taliban setup in Kabul, with New Delhi saying there are questions about its legitimacy as it is not inclusive and was formed without negotiations. “We have received an invitation for the Moscow Format meeting on Afghanistan on October 20. We will be participating in it,” external affairs ministry spokesperson Arindam Bagchi said during a weekly news briefing.