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Karzai Says Partnership Deal With India Does Not Threaten Pakistan

Afghan President Hamid Karzai (left) in New Delhi with Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh
Afghan President Hamid Karzai said on October 5 in New Delhi that a strategic partnership agreement he has signed with India does not pose a threat to neighboring Pakistan.

Karzai and Indian Prime Minister Manmohan Singh signed the strategic partnership pact on October 4 amid heightened tensions between Kabul and Islamabad.

In a speech in New Delhi on October 5, the Afghan president sought to ease Pakistan's concerns about the deal with India, Islamabad's main rival in South Asia.

"This [agreement] is to strengthen [Afghanistan, which is] a brother of Pakistan -- to train our police for us, to train our army for us, to train thousands of Afghan youth who are right now settling in India, to give us the ability to provide for the health of our people in our own country," Karzai said.

Karzai's visit to New Delhi comes after he accused Pakistan of funding militant groups in South Asia.

Ties between Kabul and Islamabad have deteriorated amid Afghan and U.S. allegations that Pakistan's ISI Intelligence service was linked to militants who killed former Afghan president Burhanuddin Rabbani last month.

Pakistani officials deny any involvement in militant attacks.

compiled from agency reports