WASHINGTON - US Special Representative for Afghanistan and Pakistan Marc Grossman would fly into Kabul on Saturday for talks with President Hamid Karzai and other officials, the State Department announced on Wednesday.
Grossman would be in Abu Dhabi until Thursday evening and would stay in New Delhi through Friday, State Department spokesperson Victoria Nuland told reporters at her daily news conference.
"All of these meetings are focused on the support these countries give to Afghanistan and talking through the process of Afghan-led reconciliation and how we can all support the aspirations of Afghanistan," she said.
The official noted that New Delhi was added to Grossman's itinerary only at the last minute. The diplomat's India trip days after Pakistan said "no" to his travel to Islamabad.
"In no way" was her reply to the query if there was a message to Pakistan because they rejected his visit. "We have made clear that we would welcome a stop by Ambassador Grossman in Islamabad on this trip.
"You know that the Pakistanis are looking hard internally at our relationship. They asked us to give them time to do that, so he will not be going there on this trip," the spokeswoman explained.
The United States believes that India has a role to play in supporting a democratic, prosperous future for Afghanistan, she said.
"This is all part and parcel of the same fight, talk, build strategy. India does support police training and other things in Afghanistan. So it's important that we keep those lines of communication open," she concluded.