US President Donald Trump on Wednesday said it is “nor fair” that India, which is geographically “much closer” to Afghanistan than the United States, is not fighting terrorist groups in the war-ravaged nation.
“Look, India is right there. They are not fighting it. We are fighting it. Pakistan is right next door. They are fighting it very little. Very, very little. It’s not fair. The United States is 7,000 miles away,” he said in reply to questions by reporters on the lawns of White House.
Trump, who has been repeatedly talking about mediation in the Kashmir problem, also said that countries including India, Iran and Russia would have to fight against the terrorists in Afghanistan at some point of time.
“At a certain point Russia, Afghanistan, Iran, Iraq, Turkey they are going to have to fight their battles too. I did it in record time but at a certain point all of these other countries where ISIS is around they have been decimated, by the way, badly decimated,” said Trump.
This comes days after around 80 people lost their lives in a suicide attack launched by the ISIS in Kabul.
“All of these countries are going to have to fight them because do we want to stay there for another 19 years? I don’t think so. So, at a certain point, other countries and that includes Russia and it includes Iran and Turkey and Iraq and Afghanistan and Pakistan and India,” he added.
Trump has repeatedly said he wants American troops out from Afghanistan. The United States is leading the Afghan peace process with the Taliban. The talks with Taliban are centred around US’ promise to withdraw its troops from Afghanistan, in exchange for the guarantee by Taliban that the Afghan soil, particularly the areas under their control, would not become a platform for transnational terrorism.
On Tuesday, he indicated that the United States forces will not completely withdraw from Afghanistan.
Early this month, United States special representative to Afghanistan Zalmay Khalilzad had come to India and held discussion with External affairs Minister S. Jaishankar. The two leaders discussed how India and the US could work effectively to ensure lasting peace in Afghanistan that has been engulfed in an 18-year-long war.