Obama makes farewell calls to Afghan, Indian leaders

Washington: A day before his departure from the White House as the 44th president of the United States, Barack Obama made farewell calls to the leaders of India and Afghanistan.

In a telephone call to Afghan President Ashraf Ghani on Wednesday, Obama urged him to continue the power sharing arrangement negotiated by his administration.

A readout released by the White House said Chief Executive Officer Dr Abdullah Abdullah also joined in the conversation between Obama and the Afghan president.

“The president encouraged both leaders to continue their shared efforts to enhance national unity and support a lasting peace and stability in Afghanistan,” the readout said.

“President Obama expressed his deep appreciation for the steadfast partnership between the United States and Afghanistan.”

He commended the leaders for their commitment to the Afghan people and applauded the national unity government’s efforts to reduce corruption and support the rule of law.

In his call to Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi, Obama discussed the progress in making India a major defence partner of the US, a process started by his administration.

He expressed his gratitude for the ‘partnership’ and reviewed with Modi joint efforts of cooperation “including defence, civil nuclear energy, and enhanced people-to-people ties”, the White House said.

“Both leaders discussed the progress they have made on shared economic and security priorities, including recognition of India as a major defence partner of the United States and addressing the global challenge of climate change.”

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