Afghanistan is expecting to receive more attack helicopters as well as other military equipment including artillery from India with New Delhi expecting to promise the delivery of arms during President Mohammad Ashraf Ghani’s visit.
According to diplomatic sources quoted in local media reports “A list of urgent requirements has already been handed over to which the Indian response has been positive. It will be discussed and cleared during Mr. Ghani’s visit.”
Priority items on the list include utility and attack helicopters, artillery, ammunition and spares in addition help in reviving some of the Soviet era factories in Afghanistan, according to The Hindu newspaper.
However, on spares and revival India has to coordinate with Russia, the paper reported, adding that while India seems to be more open in supplying lethal hardware, the equipment largely being of Russian hardware needs technical support from Moscow.
This was evident in the case of Mi-25 helicopters with one of the promised four still grounded due to lack of spares which have to come from Russia.
A diplomatic source said efforts were on for a three-way discussions and this was expected to come up for discussion during Mr. Ghani’s bilateral meeting with Prime Minister Narendra Modi.
India has remained among the top contributors in rebuilding of Afghanistan since the fall of the Taliban regime and has spent around $2 billion in various sectors in the country.
In the meantime the top US General in Afghanistan General John Nicholson has welcomed the support by India and said New Delhi should further help with the equipment process of the Afghan forces.