Afghanistan in talks’ agenda of US deputy secretary Burns

New Delhi, May 9 (IANS) Days after his meeting with External Affairs Minister SalmanKhurshid in the Kazakh capital Almaty, US Deputy Secretary of State William J. Burns arrives in New Delhi this week to hold talks on a host of issues, including Afghanistan and expanding civil nuclear cooperation with India.

In Almaty, on the sidelines of the Heart of Asia ministerial conference, Burns had met Khurshid and briefed him about the meetings Secretary of State John Kerry had with Afghan President Hamid Karzai and Pakistan Army chief Ashfaq Parvez Kayani in Belgium.

In his Delhi visit, Burns would discuss Afghanistan where “we welcome the leading role India is playing in fostering regional economic integration and spurring private sector investment”, said a US statement.

Both sides would also discuss regional issues, including “our mutual goals for greater cooperation in the Asia Pacific region and in”.

Burns’ Delhi visit is “to continue the very productive dialogue our two governments now enjoy on a wide range of political, economic and security issues. The strategic partnership with India is of great importance to the United States and one in which both our governments are continuing to invest”, said the statement.

The deputy secretary will exchange views with his counterparts on how to grow the trade and investment relationship and expand our energy and climate change cooperation, including how to further advance our civil nuclear cooperation.

“The deputy also looks forward to discussing regional issues, including our mutual goals for greater cooperation in the Asia Pacific region and in Afghanistan, where we welcome the leading role India is playing in fostering regional economic integration and spurring private sector investment,” it said.

–Indo-Asian News service

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