India, Central Asia share ancient historical & cultural linkages: EAM Dr S Jaishankar

External Affairs Minister Dr S Jaishankar said India and Central Asia share ancient historical and cultural linkages and Central Asia is considered as India’s ‘extended neighbourhood.

In his welcome remarks at the second meeting of the India-Central Asia Dialogue which was held today in digital video-conference format, he said, India shares a common geography which facilitated continuous exchange of people, ideas and goods in both directions and left indelible imprints on our customs, traditions and languages.

The External Affairs Minister said, a new chapter in the relationship began nearly 30 years ago after the emergence of independent Central Asian countries.

He said, India was one of the first countries to establish diplomatic relations with the Central Asian countries and the relationship has grown since then from strength to strength.

Dr S Jaishankar said, India and Central Asian countries face common challenges of terrorism, extremism, drug trafficking and such other issues and all these commonalities make us a natural partner in developmental journey.

He said, as developing countries, they also share common perspectives on opportunities and challenges for the their development and prosperity.