PRESS STATEMENT BY SECURITY COUNCIL PRESIDENT
NEW YORK, 29 August (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of today’s statement on Afghanistan by the President of the Security Council, Alfonso Valdivieso (Columbia):
Members of the Security Council considered the report of the Secretary-General and were briefed by Assistant Secretary-General Türk on the situation in Afghanistan.
They expressed grave concern regarding the plight of the Afghan people. They called on the warring sides, in particular the Taliban, to stop the fighting which has led to human rights abuses, permitted terrorists to find a safe haven and created one of the world’s worst humanitarian crises. They also expressed concern over the implications of the situation in Afghanistan for regional peace and security.
They agreed that a comprehensive approach to Afghanistan could help end the conflict, promote peace and rehabilitation of the country, and address the concerns of the international community, such as terrorism, refugees, human rights and the humanitarian suffering of the Afghans. In this regard, they noted the steps taken by the Taliban to implement a poppy-ban, which should help counter-narcotics efforts.
They expressed support for the meeting of the Afghanistan Support Group and the Six-Plus-Two Group, to be convened in Geneva in October, to mobilize support for the rehabilitation of former poppy cultivators. In that regard, they call on the donor community to extend further assistance to the people of Afghanistan and to respond to the Consolidated Appeal.
They look forward to the proposals of the Secretary-General on a comprehensive approach in early October. They agreed to revert to the issue of a comprehensive approach shortly thereafter with the aim of taking appropriate action in the autumn.
They again called on the parties, in particular the Taliban, to resume negotiations for a peaceful resolution of the conflict and towards creating a broad-based, representative and accountable government.
They expressed their strong support for the central role of the United Nations to help bring peace to Afghanistan, and encouraged the Personal Representative of the Secretary-General to continue his efforts in that direction.
They deplored the continued human rights abuses, in particular the discrimination against women and girls, including access to education and employment, the closure of UNSMA offices in the provinces, and restrictions on the delivery of humanitarian aid, especially the recent arrest of Afghan and foreign humanitarian personnel, and called on the Taliban to ensure the safe and unhindered access of relief personnel and aid to all those in need.
They condemned the Taliban’s continued support for international terrorism, refusal to turn over Usama bin Laden, and failure to comply with its resolutions 1333 (2000) and 1267 (1999), and confirmed that a comprehensive approach to Afghanistan must include full compliance with its decisions.
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