India, Afghanistan sign pact for visa-free travel

Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, left, talks to Chief Executive Officer of Afghanistan, Abdullah Abdullah, during a meeting in New Delhi, India, Monday, Feb. 1, 2016. Abdullah is on a five-day visit to India. (Kamal Singh/Press Trust of India via AP) INDIA OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT, NO ARCHIVE

Indian External Affairs Minister Sushma Swaraj, left, talks to Chief Executive Officer of Afghanistan, Abdullah Abdullah, during a meeting in New Delhi, India, Monday, Feb. 1, 2016. Abdullah is on a five-day visit to India. (Kamal Singh/Press Trust of India via AP) INDIA OUT, MANDATORY CREDIT, NO ARCHIVE

India and Afghanistan have signed a pact for visa-free travel by their diplomats following Afghan Chief Executive Abdullah Abdullah’s recent meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi during which they discussed key bilateral issues.

“Sustained engagement with Afghanistan. Chief Executive Abdullah meets the Prime Minister… Promoting stronger diplomatic ties… India and Afghanistan sign agreement on visa free travel for diplomats,” India’s External Affairs Ministry spokesperson Vikas Swarup tweeted on Monday.

According to Indian media reports, Abdullah thanked Modi for India’s consistent assistance support in various spheres including defence and for meeting his country’s developmental needs. India had given three multi-role Mi-35 helicopters to Afghanistan in December for combating terrorism in the war-torn country.

The Afghan Chief Executive Officer and Head of the Council of Ministers is currently in India and is expected to attend a conference on counter-terrorism in Jaipur. His visit to India comes in wake of his Indian counterpart’s visit to Kabul, where he had inaugurated the newly-built Afghan parliament building in December last year.

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