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Cablegate: India Quick to Commend Afghan Elections

This record is a partial extract of the original cable. The full text of the original cable is not available.

UNCLAS NEW DELHI 007346

SIPDIS

SENSITIVE

E.O. 12958: N/A
TAGS: PREL KDEM EAID IN AF
SUBJECT: INDIA QUICK TO COMMEND AFGHAN ELECTIONS

REF: NEW DELHI 6797

1. (SBU) The MEA released a supportive statement on
September 19 welcoming the Parliamentary and provincial
elections in Afghanistan, calling the polls "an important
stage in Afghanistan's journey towards a peaceful, stable and
prosperous society," and a demonstration of the population's
choice of "a non-violent and democratic way of life." The
statement reiterated New Delhi's support for Afghan democracy
and reconstruction, highlighting India's work to strengthen
democratic institutions in Afghanistan. The quick approval
contrasts with New Delhi's reaction to last year's
presidential elections, when it took several days to issue a
similar statement commending Afghan voters.

Comment
-------

2. (SBU) The GOI is increasingly comfortable in its role as
a donor of growing influence in Afghanistan, and much more
willing to take on a public role as a democracy promoter, as
shown by the PM's speech at the September 14 launch of the UN
Democracy Fund. New Delhi sees building democracy and
stronger relationships in Afghanistan as a very high priority
for its foreign policy. India has offered to train the newly
elected Afghan MPs in Parliamentary procedures, which will
be, along with the Indian-built Parliament house, New Delhi's
most visible pro-democracy effort in Afghanistan. Building
on the PM's positive August visit to Kabul, the launch of the
UN Democracy Fund and the US-India Democracy Initiative, and
the successful Afghan elections, we have an opportunity to
partner with the GOI to strengthen the new Afghan democracy
in a visible way. Jointly establishing and sponsoring an
institute for democracy located in Kabul, for instance, would
be a good way to translate our Democracy Initiative words
into action.

3. (U) Visit New Delhi's Classified Website:
(http://www.state.sgov.gov/p/sa/newdelhi/)
BLAKE

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