India and Afghanistan on Tuesday described terrorism as the 'most important security threat facing the region' and resolved to strengthen cooperation to combat it. Both the countries also decided to establish Partnership Council to boost bilateral developmental ties.
A joint statement, issued at the end of the talks between External Affairs Minister S M Krishna and Afghanistan Foreign Minister Rangin Dadfar Spanta, said: "They highlighted terrorism as the most important security threat facing the region and reiterated their full resolve to combat it."
The Afghanistan minister, who was in New Delhi at the invitation of Krishna, also met Prime Minister Manmohan Singh and National Security Advisor M K Narayanan and discussed a range of bilateral, regional and global issues of mutual interest.
It was also decided to establish an Indo-Afghan Partnership Council, consisting of separate groups on political consultation, capacity development and education, power and water, culture, trade and industry, health and agriculture.
"This will harness greater institutional support for the implementation of ongoing programmes and enlarge development cooperation between the two countries", the joint statement said.
Spanta also conveyed Afghanistan's deep appreciation for India's friendship, generous contribution and vital role in the process of stabilisation, reconstruction and national development.
Singh also conveyed his best wishes to Afghanistan and assured Spanta of India's support for the aspiration of the Afghan people to build a peaceful, prosperous, democratic and a pluralistic nation.
During their talks, Krishna and Spanta reaffirmed the determination of the two governments to work for making South Asia an abode of peace, prosperity, moderation and cooperation, the statement said.
Underlining the strategic partnership between India and Afghanistan, based on enduring historical and cultural ties and common interests and values, the two leaders expressed satisfaction on the progress of bilateral development projects.