27 July 2006

Security Council Press Statement on Afghanistan

NEW YORK, 24 July (UN Headquarters) -- The following Security Council press statement on Afghanistan was delivered today by Council President Jean-Marc de La Sablière (France):

The members of the Security Council received a briefing on Afghanistan this morning from Special Representative of the Secretary-General Tom Koenigs.

The members of the Security Council expressed their concern about the security situation in Afghanistan against the background of increasing activity by the Taliban and other groups.  They expressed their support for the efforts by the Afghan Security Forces, with the cooperation of the International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) and the Operation Enduring Freedom (OEF) coalition, to maintain security.  In that connection, they welcomed the prospect of further ISAF expansion, and the current and further increased coordination between ISAF and the OEF coalition.  They recognized once again the interconnected nature of the challenges in Afghanistan and, reaffirmed that sustainable progress on security, governance and development, as well as on the cross-cutting issue of counter-narcotics is mutually reinforcing and, welcomed the continued efforts of the Afghan Government and the international community to address these challenges.

The members of the Security Council welcomed the efforts made by the Government and Parliament of Afghanistan to ensure a democratic debate.  They expressed hope that the pace of reforms will accelerate.  They recalled their principled support for the rule of law, good governance, and fundamental freedoms in Afghanistan.

The members of the Security Council took note with appreciation of the Afghan efforts to implement the Afghan Compact and the support of the international community for those efforts, as evidenced by the working group process to take forward the Afghan National Development Strategy and National Drug Control Strategy and the ongoing work of the Joint Monitoring and Coordination Board.  The members of the Security Council also welcomed the Ministerial Conference on Drug Trafficking Routes from Afghanistan and the Second Tokyo Conference on Consolidation of Peace in Afghanistan, held recently in Moscow and Tokyo, respectively.  The members of the Security Council encouraged the international community to further strengthen its support under the framework of the Compact.  They reiterated their support for the assistance of the United Nations to the Government of Afghanistan in the coordination and monitoring of the implementation of the Compact.

The members of the Security Council reaffirmed their strong commitment to support the activities of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan.

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