The talks on Afghanistan will be attended by top security officials of the participating nations

New Delhi: India will host top security officials of Russia, Iran and five central Asian countries for a security dialogue on Afghanistan on Wednesday that will explore a common approach for practical cooperation in dealing with increasing threats of terrorism, radicalisation and drug trafficking following the Afghan crisis.

Sources said China was invited for the 'Delhi Regional Security Dialogue on Afghanistan' but it has already communicated to India that it would be unable to attend the meeting because of scheduling issues while Pakistan too decided to skip it.

The dialogue to be chaired by NSA Ajit Doval will be attended by top security officials of Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan.

The sources said there is a "very high degree of convergence" among the eight participating countries on the security implications of the Taliban's takeover of Afghanistan and the focus of the dialogue will be to have cooperation on practical terms to deal with the challenges.

They said the security officials are expected to deliberate on cross-border movement of people from Afghanistan as well as the threat emerging from the military equipment and weapons left behind by the US forces in that country.

The Ministry of External Affairs said the dialogue will witness expanded participation of Iran, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyz Republic, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan and Uzbekistan and the countries will be represented by their respective NSAs or secretaries of the Security Councils.

"The high-level dialogue will review the security situation in the region arising from recent developments in Afghanistan. It will deliberate upon measures to address the relevant security challenges and support the people of Afghanistan in promoting peace, security and stability," it said in a statement.

The MEA said India has traditionally enjoyed close and friendly ties with the people of Afghanistan and has called for a unified international response to address the security and humanitarian challenges facing Afghanistan.

"The forthcoming meeting is a step in that direction," it said.

The sources said none of the participating countries has recognised the Taliban and all of them have similar concerns over the situation in Afghanistan.

They said there was a credibility gap between Pakistan's actions and intentions on Afghanistan.

The sources said Iran will be represented by Rear Admiral Ali Shamkhani, Secretary, Supreme National Security Council, while Russia is sending Nikolai P Patrushev, Secretary of the Security Council.

They said Kazakhstan's Chairman of National Security Committee Karim Massimov will represent his country while Kyrgyzstan is sending Marat Mukanovich Imankulov, Secretary of the Security Council of Kyrgyz Republic.

Nasrullo Rahmatjon Mahmudzoda, Secretary, Security Council of Tajikistan and Charymyrat Kakalyyevvich Amavov, Deputy Chairman of Cabinet of Ministers of Turkmenistan on Security and Secretary, State Security Council will represent their respective countries.

The security officials are scheduled to jointly call on Prime Minister Narendra Modi.

Mr Doval will have bilateral meetings with his visiting counterparts.