ISLAMABAD - Afghan Taliban on Sunday said that India always pursued a negative policy inside Afghanistan and always supported a handful of traitors and puppets there, not the Afghan nation.

In an interview with an Afghan media outlet Azamm, Deputy Head of Taliban’s political office in Qatar and head of negotiating team with the US Sher Mohammad Abbas Stanekzai said India maintained economic, military and political ties with a “corrupt” group instead of the nation.

Chief Taliban negotiator said if India changed its long-standing policy of supporting “a handful of traitors and puppets instead of Afghan nation”, and stops pursuing its interests in Afghanistan, “we are ready to engage with them.”

“However, if it wants to support its own intentions and interests inside Afghanistan, and bases its policy on this – it will never be allowed,” said Stanekzai.

He said it would never be allowed by Islamic Emirate not only to India, but to all countries of the world. He reiterated that Islamic Emirates would never let anyone use Afghan soil for its own interests and pursue it inside Afghanistan.

 

 “If the Indian government wants to take positive steps in the Afghan peace process and in rebuilding a new Afghanistan, we are counting on it, but according to him, India has been inside Afghanistan for the last 40 years,” Taliban chief negotiator said in translated comments in a video clip on Azamm’s Youtube channel.

He said during the Soviet occupation of Afghanistan, Indian government supported and defended a handful of communist traitors who were installed by the then Soviets in Kabul and left Afghan people behind, who constituted the main bulk of Afghanistan.

 

Stanekzai said throughout the last four decades, Indian government had always left Afghan people behind.

 “Anyway, despite all this, if India changes its policy, leaves furthering its own interests in Afghanistan, takes the national interests of our country into account and wants to take positive steps for Afghanistan’s peace, reconstruction, and forthcoming Islamic government of Afghanistan and support it, Islamic Emirates of Afghanistan is ready to engage with them,” he remarked.