Taliban spokesperson Zabihullah Mujahid, in an exclusive interview with India Today, said India is an important country in the region and that the new regime in Afghanistan will not be a threat to the neighbouring country. "The Taliban won't allow any other country to be endangered by us. We assure India that our side will not be a threat to them," he said.
Mujahid also said that reports suggesting the Taliban siding with Pakistan against India were baseless. The spokesperson further said they want all countries to have good relations with them and want all countries to have their embassies in Afghanistan.
Meanwhile, Taliban leader Sher Mohammed Abbas Stanekzai has also extended an olive branch, saying they want to continue Afghanistan’s political, economic and cultural ties with India.
“India is very important for this subcontinent. We want to continue our cultural, economic and trade ties with India like in the past,” Stanekzai said. “Trade with India through Pakistan is very important for us. With India, trade through air corridors will also remain open,” he added. "We are looking forward to working with India in this regard,” the Taliban leader further said.
In an exclusive interview with CNN-News18, Stanekzai said the development works done by India in Afghanistan are their national assets. "We will keep it like that and hope in future all incomplete work will be finished by India. We invite India to come and start again and complete those projects," he added.
Stanekzai, who is the first member of the Taliban’s top hierarchy to speak about the ties with India since it tookover the country, said there is no need for India to evacuate the Hindus and Sikhs living in Afghanistan. "I think there is no requirement to evacuate them. Afghanistan is their homeland and country so they can live peacefully and there will be no harm to their lives. They can live as they were living before. We hope that Hindus and Sikhs who were in Afghanistan and had migrated to India in the last 20 years would come back soon," he said.