24 October 2001


NEW YORK, 23 October (UN Headquarters) -- Following is the text of this afternoon’s statement to the press on Afghanistan by the President of the Security Council, Richard Ryan (Ireland):

Council members met today with the Secretary-General, Special Representative Lakhdar Brahimi, Deputy Special Representative Francesc Vendrell and Mr. Kevin Kennedy of the Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs as part of an ongoing series of meetings in relation to Afghanistan.

Mr. Brahimi provided an update on his activities since last week’s briefing on Afghanistan. There was an exchange of views on the humanitarian, political and military situation in and around Afghanistan, and a discussion about the future possible role of the United Nations. Council members reiterated their full support for the work of Mr. Brahimi and encouraged him to continue his consultations.

Council members expressed concern about the humanitarian situation and stressed the importance of ensuring that emergency supplies are delivered to Afghans in need as quickly as possible. They called on States to disburse rapidly their contributions to the United Nations emergency humanitarian appeals for Afghanistan.

Council members commended the work of humanitarian workers in the region and reiterated the importance of ensuring their safety and security at all times.

Council members urged neighbouring States to intensify their cooperation in working with the United Nations to respond to the refugee crisis. They highlighted the need for the international community to respond financially to the needs of host countries.

Council members demanded that the Taliban stop preventing aid from reaching the Afghan people and stop threatening the safety and security of aid workers.

Council members reiterated their intention to remain fully briefed on the situation in Afghanistan, including the humanitarian situation.

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