|Statement by Ambassador WU Haitao at the Security Council Debate on Afghanistan|
China welcomes the convening of this open meeting on Afghanistan. China also welcomes the presence of His Excellency Mr. Salahuddin Rabbani, Minister of Foreign Affairs of Afghanistan, at the meeting. We also thank Special Representative of the Secretary-General Tadamichi Yamamoto for his briefing.
Peace and stability in Afghanistan have a direct bearing on the fundamental interests of the Afghan people, as well as on regional security, stability, development and prosperity. China applauds the efforts of the Afghan Government in safeguarding national stability, facilitating national reconciliation and promoting economic development. China underscores the important role that neighboring and regional countries play on the Afghanistan issue. Afghanistan continues to face a number of political, economic and security challenges. In order to help Afghanistan overcome such challenges, the international community should continue to provide firm support in the following areas.
First, maintaining peace and stability constitutes the basis of Afghanistan’s reconstruction and economic development. The international community should continue to support the capacity of the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces and contribute to the country’s ability to defend itself so that Afghanistan can effectively respond to threats, such as terrorism, transnational organized crime and drug trafficking. We support an active role by the Shanghai Cooperation Organization (SCO) and other actors in helping Afghanistan fight terrorism. The international community should step up its coordination and cooperation in combating terrorist elements in Afghanistan.
Secondly, political dialogue is the only viable solution for the Afghanistan issue. Actors in Afghanistan should put the country’s long-term interests and their people’s welfare first and actively participate in the reconciliation process. The international community should continue to promote the realization of a broad, inclusive political settlement that is Afghan-led and Afghan-owned. Furthermore, the international community should engage all Afghan parties concerned for the early launch of peace talks. We welcome the assistance provided by relevant regional countries and mechanisms.
Thirdly, strengthening governance is an important guarantee for Afghanistan’s peace and reconstruction process. Ultimately, Afghan affairs should be handled by the Afghan people themselves. All political actors in Afghanistan must achieve unity and resolve their differences through dialogue and consultations. The international community must fully respect the right of the Afghan people to independently choose their political system and development path. Moreover, on the basis of Afghanistan’s national development strategy and actual needs, the international community should provide targeted assistance to the Afghan Government to improve its capacity to govern.
Fourthly, integration into regional development constitutes an important path towards the achievement of peace and reconstruction in Afghanistan. The international community must make good on its pledges to provide assistance and support Afghanistan in promoting economic and social development. With its unique resources and geographical advantages, Afghanistan enjoys great prospects for regional cooperation efforts. Resolution 2344 (2017) and the relevant General Assembly resolutions stipulate that all parties must create a community of shared future for mankind in the spirit of cooperation and principle of win-win, and promote the economic development of Afghanistan and regional cooperation through the Belt and Road Initiative.
China has taken note of the Secretary-General’s special report (S/2017/696) on the strategic review of the United Nations Assistance Mission in Afghanistan (UNAMA), submitted pursuant to resolution 2344 (2017). We hope that, through the review, the United Nations will be able to further optimize and re-prioritize the tasks of the Mission in accordance with the current situation, maximize the allocation of resources, improve the management processes and enhance the Mission’s ability to deal with complex situations. China commends the work carried out by UNAMA and hopes that the Mission will respect the sovereignty, national leadership and national ownership of Afghanistan, continue to facilitate the political reconciliation process and promote the economic development of the country. Furthermore, China hopes that UNAMA will play a positive role in helping Afghanistan to restore stability, promote national reconciliation, improve governance and promote economic development.
China will continue to support the work of UNAMA. China has always played a constructive role in promoting the reconciliation process in Afghanistan. During a recent visit to Afghanistan and Pakistan by Minister of Foreign Affairs Wang Yi, the three countries agreed to establish a trilateral foreign ministers’ dialogue mechanism, support the relaunch of the Afghanistan-Pakistan-China-United States Quadrilateral Coordination Group and the reactivation of the SCO-Afghanistan Contact Group. Afghanistan and Pakistan also agreed to establish a bilateral crisis management mechanism. China will continue to support Afghanistan’s security capacity-building as well as the country’s efforts to promote economic and social development. China stands ready to work together with the international community for the early realization of peace, stability and development in Afghanistan.